South Korea learned the Greek extra virgin olive oil and the tendency to consume it is increasing

Olive oil is treated as an exotic species and not as a staple food in South Korea, but thanks to the widespread view among Koreans of the beneficial properties of Greek olive oil and the gradual penetration of Western consumer standards, its consumption is expected. product will maintain its slightly upward trend in the near future .

This is stated in the “South Korean Olive Oil Market Survey” of the Office of Economic and Commercial Affairs in Seoul, which was posted on the Foreign Ministry’s website (

In terms of suppliers of South Korean extra virgin olive oil, the dominant position is Spain, which, in 2019, covered 78.8% of imported quantities (11,000 tons) and 67.8% of the value of imports ( USD 39.5 million).

Followed by Italy (2,461 tons / 15.1 m. Dollars. USA or 26% of the value of imports) , Greece (173 tons / 1.37 m. Dollars. USA or 2,36% of the value of imports), the Turkey ($ 173.6 / US $ 604 or 1.04% of the value of imports), France ($ 77.5 / USD 574 or 1% of the value of imports) and the United States. P.A. ($ 27.8 tonnes / $ 391 thousand or 0.7% of the value of imports).

However, from the analysis of the quality (but also competitiveness) of the product of Greece and the main competing countries, “based on the best index we have, ie the CIF value in US dollars / kg of imported product, our country is ahead with 7, $ 93 US / kg, followed by Italy with USD 6.15 / USD, Spain with USD / kg and Turkey with USD / kg.

Greek olive oil exports to Korea began in 2000

Greek olive oil exports to Korea began in the early 2000s and were on the rise. Recently, as noted, there was significant interest in Greek olive oil and its exports increased faster than the increase in consumption of the product, resulting in an increase in our market share, which remains limited (2.4% compared to 1, 7% in 2018). The amount of Greek olive oil exported in the last six years ranged between 100 and 200 tons and its value between 743 thousand (2017) and 1.37 million US dollars (in 2019, which was a record year for the value of our exports) .

The very important indicator for us of the value per kilo (because, in combination with the increase in exports, it demonstrates the image of the Greek product in the Korean market) increased slowly but steadily, from $ 2.4 US / kg in 2001 to 7, USD 93 / kg in 2019.

In order to stabilize and strengthen the presence of Greek olive oil in the South Korean market, as mentioned in the research, it is proposed to prepare and implement a medium-term promotion and promotion program similar to that of Greek wine.

Regarding the exports of non-extra virgin olive oils from our country to South Korea, they are infinitesimal to zero. South Korea’s main suppliers are Spain ($ 1,372 / $ 4.53 million or 51.8% of the value of imports), Italy ($ 426 / $ 2.8 million or 32). % of the value of imports) and Turkey (290 tons / 765 thousand US dollars or 8.75% of the value of imports).

Finally, it is emphasized that the OEU Seoul Office has updated lists of Korean companies importing and distributing olive oil and table olives, which are available to any interested Greek company.

Read also: Super Healthy Foods

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