the Prodromou family, with parents on the left and their two grown children on the right; the Yanni's Olive Grove logo is in the middle

Yanni's Olive Grove is a family business in Nea Potidaia, Chalkidiki, in northern Greece. In recent years, Yanni’s extra virgin olive oils (EVOOs) have received 50 awards at major international olive oil competitions, including acclaim as ultra-healthy EVOOs and listings as some of the Top EVOOs of the World, according to the EVOO World Ranking.

Yannis Prodromou and his wife Evi had been olive farmers all their lives, selling their fresh olives to big companies. In 2012, seeking the value their fine products deserved, they decided to put their olives on a different path. Yannis and Evi realized that olive trees produced not only olives, but many other products, such as olive oil. However, it was very difficult to switch from table olive sales to olive oil production in their region, because the Chalkidiki area is known worldwide for its green table olives, and the couple knew nothing about the production of high quality EVOO.

Determined to change that, Yannis and Evi set out to educate themselves. They attended many seminars and visited many exhibitions in Greece and abroad in order to learn the best practices of olive oil production according to International Olive Council (IOC) procedures. Their unstoppable thirst for knowledge and progress drove them to a unique institution, the American Farm School (AFS) in Thessaloniki, Greece. With the AFS’s help, they changed everything about their farming and production process that did not fit IOC recommendations. Ever since then, the cultivation, harvesting, standardization, and export of their EVOOs and olive snacks have been supervised by the Krinos Olive Center at the AFS

Olive groves with the sea on the right and the blue sky behind them

Now, Yanni’s Olive Grove produces EVOOs only from olives grown on their waterfront estate of 6000 olive trees – all the local Chalkidiki variety. The olives in Yanni’s Nea Potidaia olive groves are all harvested by hand, and the green olives are transported to the nearby olive processing plant in ventilated plastic crates within a few hours. Before processing, they are placed on a conveyor belt and carefully hand sorted to keep only the best olives.

The company established a processing plant for EVOO and other agricultural products in Nea Tenedos (EL40347), near their olive groves. This helps them minimize the time that elapses between the olive harvest and extra virgin olive oil extraction at a low temperature, its careful storage, and bottling with nitrogen to keep out oxygen.

Yanni’s Olive Grove ensures the high quality of all their products through ideal production conditions, as demonstrated by their video, their certifications, their awards, and their collaboration with the scientific community. The company has been recognized for its unique achievement as a model producer using “gaiasense” intelligent agriculture for olive tree cultivation in a case study for a pilot project. Yanni’s high-quality production process is FDA, ISO 22000:2018, and PDO certified, and its olive trees are DNA certified by the Hellenic Ministry of Rural Development and Food.

Yanni’s Olive Grove emphasizes safety and environmental protection throughout their production and packaging process. Thanks to specialized cultivation practices and integrated management, only “green” practices are used, including recycling and waste management. To make their production process as transparent as possible, the company has developed and launched an online traceability system for its olive foods. Consumers can use the QR CODE and lot number on the back of the EVOO container to learn the date of production and expiration, the results of chemical and sensory analyses, and the specific area the olive oil came from, which is visible online on a Google map. 

Yanni’s Olive Grove supports many scientific studies, collaborating with Alzheimer Hellas and two of the most prestigious Greek Universities. For example, the MICOIL study is the world’s first clinical trial in humans to evaluate the effects of different kinds of olive oil on amnesic patients diagnosed with Mild Cognitive Impairment, which can lead to Alzheimer’s disease. Many of the study’s results have been published in the highly respected scientific Journal of Alzheimer's disease.  This study indicates the impressive health benefits of YANNI’S early harvest EVOO, with its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and neuroprotective properties.

In continuing collaboration with the Krinos Olive Center, Yanni’s Olive Grove launched a unique new olive product in the North American market: Sun-Dried Green & Black Olive Snacks With Dried Fruits and Semi-Dried Low Salt Green & Black Olive Snacks. Arising from the philosophy of the healthy Mediterranean diet, while offering convenience as well as a tasty, harmonious blend of sweet, sour, and salty, this new olive food is perfect for healthy snacking.

Within a few years of its rejuvenation, Yanni’s Olive Grove has achieved widespread acclaim as a company that produces high quality olive food products that are as nutritious as they are flavorful.

By Evi Psounou Prodomou and Lisa Radinovsky