Our Dream Is to Leave the World Better Than We Found It: Word of Oleum, the Brand of Olive Oil Excellence in Sicily

With over 3,000 members and more than 30 associated mills, Oleum is an organizational powerhouse that moves millions of euros in revenue, elevating the value of Sicilian excellence.

Oleum Sicilia is a cooperative company that has changed the face of the olive oil sector on the island. In 2017, under the leadership of its President, Mario Terrasi, the company embarked on a journey that has now led to over 3,000 members, comprising both small and large producers, with a 3-to-1 ratio.

From the beginning, the objective was to bring together small and large olive oil producers under a single brand. In 2018, Oleum Sicilia officially entered the market, registering a collective trademark. Numerous services are offered to producers and include projects on operational plans, dedicated technical assistance, all kinds of training on how to protect against pathogens, optimize production, and more.

However, the cornerstone of the offering is the undisputed quality of the finished product. Oleum Sicilia can boast many certifications, ranging from IGP (Protected Geographical Indication) and organic to DOP (Protected Designation of Origin). The company’s standards are among its proudest achievements. Oleum is ISO 22005 certified and one of the first companies in Sicily to be certified as sustainable.

As explained by the company’s President, “It is not just about respecting the environment but considering all the parameters that we hope will allow us to leave the world better than we found it.”

There are also economic benefits for the associated producers. The cooperative provides them with representation. In the fragmented olive oil production sector, where the average size of each small company is about one hectare of land, accessing the market becomes challenging. Being part of a larger entity ensures better contractual terms.

In this regard, from initial revenues of a few hundred thousand euros, in 2022 Oleum became the leading economic player in the olive oil supply chain in Sicily, with revenues of around 5 million euros.

Today, the company sells both bulk and bottled olive oil, with a focus on developing the latter option further.

It collaborates with over 30 partner mills, offering services such as storage, filtration, and preservation with nitrogen to its producers.   

Although the primary market is currently in Italy, the goal for the near future is to increasingly target exports. The main foreign markets include the United States and all European Union countries.

Oleum is undoubtedly a virtuous example of a Made in Sicily business, with established mechanisms that allow a large number of units to collaborate synergistically.

The company actively participates in all major fairs and industry events every year, ranging from SIAL in Las Vegas to TUTTOFOOD in Milan, from Sol&Agrifood in Verona to BIOFACH in Nuremberg.

Upcoming events include Oleum Sicilia’s presence at the Fancy Food Show in New York and Anuga in Cologne, demonstrating the company’s ongoing commitment to promoting and spreading Sicilian olive oil culture beyond national borders.