Olive oil production takes place in Cyprus as well as other Mediterranean countries such as Spain, Italy and Greece from ancient times. Olive oil processing has been an important and traditional industry for our country throughout history with the 1st olive press from the Cypro-classical to the Hellenistic I period (5th - 2nd century BC), in the city of Nicosia. The good weather in Cyprus helps the olive maturity and processing, and hence the production of olive oil.

Olive cultivation represents social, economical and cultural activity but unfortunately, the olive oil procedure generates also large volumes of waste referred as Oil Mill Effluents (OME), which are difficult to be processed. The quantity and the quality of these effluents depend on

 

the method that was used for the production of olive oil, i.e. two-phase and three-phase decantation techniques. The OME have to be treated prior to their use due to the fact that they pose a serious environmental threat. If waste products from olive oil processing are not safely disposed of, they are likely to provoke soil and water pollution that may be harmful to human health, as well as kill plant and animal life.

The aim of the project is to characterize and hence, identify the materials that compose the effluents which are produced by the olive oil processing and finally, implement environmentally friendly and efficient procedures so as to efficiently deal with those problems.