Jordanian olive oil would not register with most consumers. But buyers will know that Jordan is one of the oldest olive oil producing nations in the world and trade visitors to last week’s Anuga fair saw evidence that the country is now working hard to develop export opportunities.

The United Company for Marketing Jordanian Olive, a consortium of 33 producers, said the industry already exported to the US, South Africa and the Gulf states. But Samir Said said his members had identified the UK as a top priority.

Until recently Jordan was producing primarily to meet domestic demand. Its output is still small. But with one million trees a year being planted it is building up considerable capacity for export.

Even with EU tariffs, Jordanian oil will have a competitive price position, although suppliers are keen to play up the quality of their products, produced to international standards.

The consortium was promoting itself at Anuga with the slogan ‘Ancient industry, modern techniques’. One producer, Zaitt, was promoting the fact it supplied only hand-picked, cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil, made with the latest Italian presses. With annual capacity of 6,000 tonnes, Zaitt is keen to develop overseas sales. Business development and marketing manager Rasha Dabbas said it already had distribution in France.