She had a successful career in journalism but her past was calling her. As a little girl, Ioanna spent her summers running through her grandparents olive groves. It was there that she learned the depth of love and respect that her grandparents had for their olive trees.
We visited their family home, taking in the beautiful energy filled with days gone by and pictures of her loved ones, past and present. Ioanna was standing by the very small window over the kitchen sink, when she shared her grandmother’s philosophy with us. The view out of the window was over looking the Gulf of Corinth, stunningly blue waters that took my breath. On the other side of their home were groves upon groves of olive trees that covered the hilly terrain. The back drop was the spectacular mountains that had been shaped over thousands of years. Growing up her grandmother would always remind her that although our eyes want to look at the sea, it’s the mountains that give us our magic. I will never forget these words or the touching emotion in Ioanna’s voice when she shared her story with us.
It’s magical! Unless you have had the privilege of walking through a well loved olive grove, it is hard to describe that magic that I felt. For starters, olive trees act as a carbon to purify the air we breathe. So it is a given that you are breathing in high quality fresh air when in the presence of a grove. In the case of My Precious Olive Tree the visual landscape is magnificent. Absolutely a feast for the eyes! The stillness relaxes you as if you were in a beautiful spa environment. Ioanna’s gentle ways with her warm smile and kind heart while sharing her history and life long love for these olive trees makes you feel as if you are with family. I don’t know by describing this experience if I can do it justice but once you taste this extra virgin olive oil, you will have a better understanding of what happens prior to it ever going into a bottle for your kitchen.
Fast forward, Ioanna traded in her celebrity to raise her children and take over her grandparent’s olive groves. In a very short few years she is seeing top awards from around the world. This is so important to a producer, as it exposes their extra virgin olive oil to a world that might otherwise never know about their efforts to create one of the best on the market. She has faced more of her share of diversity. Not only the typical farmer’s hardships that are out of her control, she has also dealt with the resistance of not doing it the way it’s been done for thousands of years. Those local farmers that have given her such little respect are now starting to take notice and express their curiosity in how she is producing such an amazing product. Ioanna is a great example of consistency, patience, and determination. Qualities no doubt she learned from her grandparents.
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