After ten days and 300+ mm of rain, the sun came out today. We went for a walk around to see what the olives looked like and found they had absorbed masses of water, some looking like small plums. Not a big help when we’re trying to produce oil. Some were literally bursting with water, their skins split open (see photo), especially where there had been fly strike – where the ‘mouche’ or olive fruit fly – dacus oleae or bactrocera oleae – had made a hole to lay her eggs.
The fruit is also suffering a browning inside the olives, or bruising, because of the high water content in competition with the oil. The pressure of water uptake has ruptured the cells inside the flesh of the fruit, from the nut out, and this has already produced a ‘moisi’ or mouldy smell noticeable walking along the lines of trees and which would give the same unpleasant taste in the oil. All really bad news.