Olive Mill Wastes in the Mediterranean: An Initial Assessment of Organic Matter and Nutrients of Agricultural Value

Evan Marks*, Hanene Akrout, Vasiliki Kinigopoulou, Charalampos Doulgeris, Salah Jellali, Carlos Rad, Paula Sánchez Zulueta, Evangelos Tziritis, Leila El-Bassi, Mejdi Jeguirim

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Citations (Scopus)


Olive mill wastes in the Mediterranean continue to be a management challenge due to the large volumes produced. Their recycling in agricultural systems may be improved, with multiple benefits for the environment and soil protection, while promoting the circular economy. Information on amounts and physicochemical properties of olive mill wastes will help the development of sustainable strategies to convert them into fertilizers or soil amendments in the Mediterranean Basin. To this end, we obtained up-to-date data on olive production and generation of wastes in Spain, Tunisia, and Greece and characterized representative samples in the laboratory in terms of their agronomic properties. We then made calculations of the total quantities of nutrients and matter which may be recycled in agriculture. More particularly, annual mineral ash contained in the waste streams of the three countries amounts to 137 thousand tons per year. Solid waste properties were more homogenous than wastewater properties, indicating that local management and production conditions in three-phase mills is more diverse, so standardization of conversion technologies is likely to be easier for two-phase mills.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRecent Advances in Environmental Science from the Euro-Mediterranean and Surrounding Regions - Proceedings of 2nd Euro-Mediterranean Conference for Environmental Integration, EMCEI-2 2019
EditorsMohamed Ksibi, Achraf Ghorbal, Sudip Chakraborty, Helder I. Chaminé, Maurizio Barbieri, Giulia Guerriero, Olfa Hentati, Abdelazim Negm, Anthony Lehmann, Jörg Römbke, Armando Costa Duarte, Elena Xoplaki, Nabil Khélifi, Gilles Colinet, João Miguel Dias, Imed Gargouri, Eric D. Van Hullebusch, Benigno Sánchez Cabrero, Settimio Ferlisi, Chedly Tizaoui, Amjad Kallel, Sami Rtimi, Sandeep Panda, Philippe Michaud, Jaya Narayana Sahu, Mongi Seffen, Vincenzo Naddeo
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media Deutschland GmbH
Number of pages5
ISBN (Print)9783030512095
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Event2nd Euro-Mediterranean Conference on Environmental Integration, EMCEI 2019 - Sousse, Tunisia
Duration: Oct 10 2019Oct 13 2019

Publication series

NameEnvironmental Science and Engineering
ISSN (Print)1863-5520
ISSN (Electronic)1863-5539


Conference2nd Euro-Mediterranean Conference on Environmental Integration, EMCEI 2019


  • Carbon
  • Nitrogen
  • Olive mill solid waste
  • Olive mill wastewater
  • Organic matter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Information Systems

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