Turkey's "immortal" olive trees fund scholarships

Izmir officials organised an olive oil harvest of more than 200 olive trees, many of them more than 500 years old, with the funds made from oil sales supporting scholarships for local students, HaberTürk reported on Sunday. 

One of the trees in the city's Seferihisar district was estimated to be 1800 years old. A half litre of olive oil was obtained from it and sold for 30,000 Turkish liras. 

Olive oil prepared from the fruits of these near-ancient trees were offered at an auction in a Greek amphitheatre, recently discovered as part of the ongoing excavation of the ancient city of Teos. Oil was also available for direct purchase. 

The mayor of Seferihisar Municipality said the event was meant to raise awareness about the olive trees.

"It is said the olive tree is immortal," he said. "It continues to bear for thousands of years despite storms and earthquakes, no matter what happens. We're really talking about a miracle tree. No matter what price is offered in the auction, it will still underestimate the value of the olive tree."