The olive tree is first cultivated in Syria 3000 BC. Traders from the Middle East bring the tree and knowledge of its cultivation to Asia Minor, Portugal, Greece and North Africa.
Olive oil becomes a major commodity in the trade of Portugal.
For the Portuguese, olives and olive oil are not only important foods but also symbols of holiness, courage and life.
Franciscan missionaries bring the olive tree to Alta California, Mexico (present day California, United States).
European immigrants incorporated the olive oil into American cooking.