Effect of different irrigation regimes on the quality attributes of monovarietal virgin olive oil from cv. “Cobrançosa”


  • A. A. Fernandes-Silva CITAB-Centre for the Research and Technology of Agro-Environment and Biological Sciences, University of Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro - School of Agriculture and Veterinary Sciences, Department of Agronomy, University of Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro
  • J. B. Gouveia LET-Technical Studies Laboratory – Institute of Agronomy, Technical University of Lisbon
  • P. Vasconcelos LET-Technical Studies Laboratory – Institute of Agronomy, Technical University of Lisbon
  • T. C. Ferreira International Consultant, Climate Change Adaptation
  • F. J. Villalobos Departamento de Agronomía, Universidad de Cordoba - Instituto de Agricultura Sostenible, CSIC




cv. Cobrançosa, Irrigation, Quality indices, Virgin olive oil


The aim of this study was to assess the effect of different irrigation strategies in virgin olive oil (VOO) composition and quality of cv. Cobrançosa, integrated in a protected denomination of origin of “Azeite de Trás-os-Montes” in the Northeast of Portugal. Three irrigation treatments were applied: T2-full irrigation that received a seasonal water equivalent to 100% of estimated crop evapotranspiration (ETc), T1-continuous deficit irrigation (30% ETc) and T0- rainfed treatment. Data were collected from two consecutive crop years (2005-2006). Irrigation regimes had a minor effect on standard quality indices (free fatty acids, peroxide value, K232 and K270) of VOO and in fatty acid composition. Total polyphenols decreased up to treatment T2, and were strongly related to the water stress integral, suggesting that the effect of irrigation on this variable occurs along the crop season and not just during the oil accumulation phase. A strategy of continuous deficit irrigation with only 30% of maximum ETc may have an advantageous effect, as it increased oil yield to more than double that of rainfed conditions while VOO quality was similar.


Download data is not yet available.


Aganchich B, El Antari A, Wahbi S, Tahi H, Wakrim R, Serraj R. 2008. Fruit and oil quality of mature olive trees under partial rootzone drying in field conditions. Grasas Aceites 59, 225-233.

Aparicio R, Roda L, Albi MA, Gutiérrez F. 1999. Effect of various compounds on virgin olive oil stability measured by rancimat. J. Agric. Food Chem. 47, 4150-4155. http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/jf9812230 PMid:10552782

Baldioli M, Servili M, Perrett G, Montedoro GF. 1996. Antioxidant activity of tocopherols and phenolic compounds of virgin olive oil. J. Am. Oil Chem. Soc. 73, 1589-1593. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/BF02523530

Barone E, Gullo G, Zappia R, Inglese P. 1994. Effect of crop load on fruit ripening and olive oil (Olea europea L.) quality. J. Hort. Sci. 69, 67-73.

Beltran G, Uceda M, Hermoso M, Frias LM. 2008. Maduración, In: Barranco D, Fernández-Escobar R, Rallo L (Eds). El cultivo del olivo, Mundi-Prensa, Madrid, pp 163-187. PMid:18156896

Bonoli M, Bendini A, Cerretani L, Lercker G, Gallina T. 2004. Qualitative and semiquantitative analysis of phenolic compounds in extra virgin olive oils as a function of the ripening degree of olive fruits by different analytical techniques. J. Agric. Food Chem. 52, 7026–7032. http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/jf048868m PMid:15537313

Boskou D, Tsimidou M, Blekas G.2006. Polar Phenolic Compounds: In D. Boskou (Ed.). Oil Chemistry and Technology, Champaign: AOCS Press, pp.41-67.

d'Andria R, Lavini A, Morelli G, Patumi M, Terenziani S, Calandrelli D, d Fragnito F. 2004. Effects of water regimes on five pickling and double aptitude olive cultivars (Olea europaea L.). J. Hort. Sci. Biotechnol. 79, 18-25.

European Union Commission Regulation. 2003. Council Regulation (EC) No 1989/2003 of 21 October 2003, amending Regulation No 2568/91 EEC on the characteristics of olive oil and olive-pomace oil and on the relevant methods of analysis modifies the No. 2568/91 EEC on olive oils and pomace olive oils characteristics and relative analysis methods. E.U. Off. J. Eur. Communities, L. 295, 57-56.

Faci JM, Berenguer MJ, Espada, JL, Gracia S. 2002. Effect of variable water irrigation supply in olive (Olea europaea L.) cv. Arbequina in Aragon (Spain). II. Extra Virgin oil quality parameters. Acta Hortic. 586, 649-652.

Fernandes-Silva AA, Ferreira TC, Correia, CM, Malheiro, AC, Villalobos FJ.2010. Influence of different irrigation regimes on crop yield and water use efficiency of olive. Plant Soil 333, 35-47. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11104-010-0294-5

Gómez-Alonso S, Salvador MD, Fregapane G. 2002. Phenolic compounds profile of Cornicabra virgin olive oil J. Agric. Food Chem. 50, 6812-6817. http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/jf0205211 PMid:12405780

Gómez-RicoA, Salvador MD, Moriana A, Pérez D, Olmedilla N, Ribas F, Fregapane G. 2007. Influence of different irrigation strategies in a tradicional Cornicabra cv. olive orchard on virgen olive oil composition and quality. Food Chem. 100, 568-578. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2005.09.075

Gómez-Rico A, Salvador MD, Fregapane G. 2009. Virgin olive oil and olive fruit minor constituents as affected by irrigation management based on SWP and TDF as compared to ETc in medium-density young olive orchards (Olea europaea L. cv. Cornicabra and Morisca). Food Res. Int. 42, 1067-1076. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodres.2009.05.003

Gouveia JMB. 1995. Azeites Virgens do Alto Alentejo: Comportamentos químico, tecnológico e sensorial. PhD. Universidade Técnica de Lisboa, Instituto Superior de Agronomia, Lisboa, Portugal

Gucci R, Lodolini EM, Rapoport HF. 2007. Productivity of olive trees with different water status and crop load. J. Hort. Sci. Biotechnol. 82, 648–656.

Guerfel M, Mansour MB, Ouni Y, Guido F, Boujnah D, Zarrouk M. 2012. Chemical composition of virgin olive oils from the Chemlali cultivar with regard to the method of the olive tree propagation. Grasas Aceites 63, 290-295. http://dx.doi.org/10.3989/gya.010712

Iniesta F, Testi L, Orgaz, F, Villalobos FJ. 2009. The effects of regulated and continuous deficit irrigation on the water use, growth and yield of olive trees. Eur. J. Agron. 30, 258–265. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.eja.2008.12.004

Ismail AS, Stavroulakis G, Metzidakis J. 1999. Effect of irrigation on the quality characteristics of organic olive oil. Acta Hort. 474, 687-689.

Kamal-Eldin A. 2006. Effect of fatty acids and tocopherols on the oxidative stability of vegetable oils. Eur. J. Lipid Sci. Technol. 58, 1051-1061. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ejlt.200600090

Laübli MW, Bruttel PA. 1986. Determination of the oxidative stability of fats and oils by the Rancimat method. J. Am. Oil Chem. Soc. 63, 792-795. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/BF02541966

Magliulo V, d'Andria R, Lavini A, Morelli G, Patumi M. 2003. Yield and quality of two rainfed olive cultivars shifting to irrigation. J. Hort. Sci Biotechnol. 78, 15-23.

Matos LC, Cunha SC, Amaral JS, Pereira JA, Andrade PB, Seabra RM, Oliveira MBPP. 2007b. Chemometric characterization of three varietal olive oils (Cvs. Cobrançosa, Madural and Verdeal Transmontana) extracted from olives with different maturation indices. Food Chem. 102, 406-414. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2005.12.031

Matos LC, Pereira JA, Andrade PB, Seabra R M, Oliveira MBPP. 2007a. Evaluation of a numerical method to predict the polyphenols content in monovarietal olive oils. Food Chem. 102, 976-983. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2006.04.026

Menendez JA, Papadimitropoulou A, Vellon L, Colomer R, Lupu R. 2006 . A genomic explanation connecting "Mediterranean diet", olive oil and cancer: Oleic acid, the main monounsaturated fatty acid olive oil, induces formation of inhibitory "PE3 transcription factor - PEA3 DNA binding site" complexes at the Her-2/neu (erB-2) oncogenese promoter in breast, ovarian and stomach cancer cells. Eur. J. Cancer 42, 2425-2432. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejca.2005.10.016 PMid:16406575

Moriana A, Pérez-López D, Gómez-Rico A, Salvador MD, Olmedilla N, Ribas F, Fregapane G. 2007. Irrigation scheduling for traditional, low-density olive orchards: Water relations and influence on oil characteristics. Agric. Water Manage 87, 171-179. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.agwat.2006.06.017

Motilva MJ, Tovar MJ, Romero MP, Alegre S, Girona J. 2000. Influence of regulated deficit irrigation strategies applied to olive trees (Arbequina cultivar) on oil yield and oil composition during the fruit ripening period. J. Sci. Food Agric. 80, 2037-2043. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/1097-0010(200011)80:14<2037::AID-JSFA733>3.0.CO;2-0

Mousa YM, Gerasopoulos D, Metzidakis I, Kiritsakis A. 1996. Effect of altitude on fruit and oil quality characteristics of "Mastóides" olives. J. Sci. Food Agric. 71, 345-350. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/(SICI)1097-0010(199607)71:3<345::AID-JSFA590>3.0.CO;2-T

Myers BJ. 1988. Water stress integral a link between short-term stress and long term growth. Tree Physiol. 4, 315-323. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/treephys/4.4.315 PMid:14972802

Nergiz C, Engez Y. 2000.Compositional variation of olive fruit during ripening. Food Chem. 69, 55-59. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0308-8146(99)00238-1

Owen RW, Mier W, Giacosa A, Hull WE, Spiegelhalder B, Bartsch H. 2000. Phenolic compounds and squalene in olive oils: The concentration and antioxidant potential of total phenols, simple phenols, secoiridoids, lignans and squalene. Food Chem. Toxicol. 38, 647–659. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0278-6915(00)00061-2

Pastor M, Castro J, Manrique T, Gómez Beltrán L. 1996.Crecimiento del fruto, formación de aceite y producción del olivar regado con diferentes programas de riego por goteo en Andalucía Frutic. Prof. 76, 6-23.

Patumi M, d'Andria R, Fontanazza G, Morelli, G, Giori P, Sorrentino G. 1999. Yield and oil quality of intensively trained trees of three cultivars of olive under different irrigation regimes. J. Hort. Sci. Biotechnol. 74, 729- 737.

Patumi M, d'Andria R, Marsilio V, Fontanazza G, Morelli G, Lanza B. 2002. Olive and olive oil quality after intensive monocone olive growing (Olea europaea L., cv. Kalamata) in different irrigation regimes. Food Chem. 77, 27-34. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0308-8146(01)00317-X

Pérez-Jiménez F, Ruano J, Perez-Martinez P, Lopez- Segura F, Lopez-Miranda J. 2007. The influence of olive oil on human health: not a question of fat alone. Mol. Nutr. Food Res. 51, 1199-1208. PMid:17879991

Romero C, García P, Brenes M, Garcia A, Garrido A. 2002. Phenolic compounds in natural black Spanish olive varieties. Eur. Food Res. Technol. 215, 489-496. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00217-002-0619-6

Rondanini DP, Castro, DN, Searles PS, Rousseaux MC. 2011. Fatty acid profiles of varietal virgin olive oils (Olea europaea L.) from mature orchards in warm arid valleys of Northwestern Argentina (La Rioja). Grasas Aceites 62, 399-409. http://dx.doi.org/10.3989/gya.125110

Salvador MD, Aranda F, Fregapane G. 1999. Contribution of chemical components of Cornicabra virgin oils to oxidative stability. A study of three successive crop seasons. J. Am. Oil Chem. Soc. 76, 427-432. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11746-999-0020-8

Stefanoudaki E, Chartzoulakis K, Koutsaftakis A, Kotsifaki F. 2001. Effect of drought stress on qualitative characteristics of olive oil of cv Koroneiki. Grasas Aceites 52, 202-206. http://dx.doi.org/10.3989/gya.2001.v52.i3-4.358

Stefanoudaki E, Williamas M, Chartzoulakis K, Harwood J. 2009. Effect of Irrigation on Quality Attributes of Olive Oil. J. Agric. Food Chem. 57, 7048-7055. http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/jf900862w PMid:19722583

Tognetti R, D'Andria R, Sacchi R, Lavini A, Morelli G, Alvino A. 2007. Deficit irrigation affects seasonal changes in leaf physiology and oil quality of Olea europaea (cultivars Frantoio and Leccino). Ann. Appl. Biol. 150, 169–186. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1744-7348.2007.00117.x

Tovar MJ, Motilva MJ, Romero MP. 2001. Changes in the phenolic compositionf virgin olive oil from young trees (Olea europaea L. cv. Arbequina) grown under linear irrigation strategies. J. Agric. Food Chem. 49, 5502-5508. http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/jf0102416 PMid:11714351

Tovar MJ, Romero MP, Alegre S, Girona J, Motilva MJ. 2002. Composition and organoleptic characteristics of oil from Arbequina olive (Olea europaea L) trees under deficit irrigation. J. Sci. Food Agric. 82, 1755- 1763. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jsfa.1246

Tovar MJ, Romero M P, Girona J, Motilva MJ. 2002. L-Phenylalanine ammonia-lyase activity and concentration of phenolics in developing olive (Olea europaea L. cv. Arbequina) fruit grown under different irrigation regimes. J. Sci. Food Agric. 82, 892-898. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jsfa.1122

Salvador MD, Aranda F, Fregapane G. 1999. Contribution of chemical components of Cornicabra virgin oils to oxidative stability. A study of three successive crop seasons. J. Am. Oil Chem. Soc. 76, 427-432. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11746-999-0020-8

Servilli M, Esposto S, Lodolini E, Selvaggini R, Taticchi A, Urbani S, Montedoro G, Serravalle M, Gucci R. 2007. Irrigation effects on quality, phenolic composition, and selected volatiles of virgin olive oils Cv. Leccino. J. Agric. Food Chem. 55, 6609-6618. http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/jf070599n PMid:17636938

Vázquez-Roncero A, Janer del Valle C, Janer del Valle L. 1973. Determinación de los polifenoles totales en aceite de oliva. Grasas Aceites 243,50-357.

Vinha AF, Ferreres F, Silva BM, Valentão P, Gonçalves A, Pereira JA, Oliveira MB, Seabra RM, Andrade, PB. 2005. Phenolic profiles of Portuguese olive fruits (Olea europaea L.): Influences of cultivar and geographical origin. Food Chem. 89, 561-568. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2004.03.012

Wahbi S, Wakrim R, Aganchich B, Tahi H, Serraj R. 2005. Effects of partial root zone drying (PRD) on adult olive tree (Olea europaea) in field conditions under arid climate. I. Physiological and agronomic responses. Agric. Ecosyst. Environ. 106, 289-301. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.agee.2004.10.015




How to Cite

Fernandes-Silva AA, Gouveia JB, Vasconcelos P, Ferreira TC, Villalobos FJ. Effect of different irrigation regimes on the quality attributes of monovarietal virgin olive oil from cv. “Cobrançosa”. grasasaceites [Internet]. 2013Mar.30 [cited 2021Oct.19];64(1):41-9. Available from: https://grasasyaceites.revistas.csic.es/index.php/grasasyaceites/article/view/1406




Most read articles by the same author(s)