The cultivation of the “Bella di Cerignola”, the biggest table olive in the world, has very ancient origins. Some authors believe that this cultivar derives from the ancient roman “Orchite” olives, which are mentioned in the writings of Columella.
According to others it was introduced from Spain, around 1400, in the territory of Cerignola. In their opinion this would justify the synonym of “Olive of Spain”, used in the past.
According to others, however, the synonym “Olive of Spain” would derive from the type of processing used in Cerignola, precisely the “Spanish” or “Sevillian” method.
Anyway, a similar plant was never found elsewhere and therefore it can be considered a native variety of the Cerignola area.
The cultivation of this olive has always been an important business in Cerignola. In the beginning processed for domestic use, it has spread gradually, thanks to migration, all over the world and especially in the United States of America, to become one of the most popular table olives.
Already in the late nineteenth century Cerignola olives were shipped to the eastern part of the United States of America, in small cone-shaped containers of wood, called “Cugnett”, and in wooden barrels, called “Vascidd”.
Thanks to its food value deriving from the particular pedoclimatic environment in which it is grown, unique and not repeatable in other areas, the “Bella di Cerignola” olive obtained in 2000 the European registration as “La Bella della Daunia PDO”.
History, gastronomy, the beauty of the landscape, traditions, habits and the farming culture of the people are added to this value.
The finest, biggest olives, with the necessary requirements requested by the Production Regulations of the PDO La Bella della Daunia, Bella di Cerignola variety, are processed and marketed by the Cooperative, both as green and black olives, with the prestigious European Protected Designation of Origin brand.
For some years the Cooperative has launched the production of organic Bella di Cerignola olives from organic farming.
As part of the innovative spirit that has always characterized the Cooperative, it has taken out a patent for industrial invention, thanks to which the Bella di Cerignola olives are processed and marketed also as red olives.