“We admit it – it’s a unique idea.” Br. Kenneth Thomas, FMM is often asked about how the Brothers of Mercy of Montabaur decided to sell their own brand of 100 percent extra-virgin olive oil and assortment of olive products as a fundraising effort for the nonprofit organization. “We weren’t considering a fundraising idea like this, but, when our chief operating officer happened to visit a friend in California who manages an olive processing company, he returned to Western New York brimming with enthusiasm.”
Sales started with the extra virgin olive oil, the oil produced from the first pressing of the olives. “What makes this oil so special is the remarkably short time between when the olives are harvested and when the oil is processed,” Thomas said. “It’s only about 90 minutes from harvesting from the trees to the pressing process. You just can’t get any fresher than that.” In fact, the oil has been awarded the top prize in prestigious olive oil competitions in California.
The Brothers liked the fact that olive oil is a healthy dietary fat. They also liked the strong connection between olives, olive oil and the Bible so much, that they added another olive product, muffuletta mix, a tasty blend of olives, peppers, garlic, onions, carrots, celery and cauliflower. It’s used in a variety of ways including adding flavor and texture to salads, casseroles, dip, or as the base for the famous New Orleans muffuletta sandwich.
It wasn’t long before whole olives were added to the project. Thomas now offers garlic-stuffed, Sicilian, bleu cheese stuffed, spicy Buffalo bleu cheese stuffed, and feta-stuffed. The popular olive products are sold on-line in and in the Brothers of Mercy Nursing and Rehabilitation Center gift shop, 10570 Bergtold Road, and in the Brothers of Mercy Sacred Heart Adult Home 4520 Ransom Road, Clarence, as well as in stores and restaurants. Visit the Brothers of Mercy website for a list of locations and on-line purchase information, www.BrothersOfMercy.org. There is also a Facebook page on which Thomas lists upcoming festivals and community events in which the products will be sold. “Look for ‘Brothers of Mercy EVOO and olive products,” he said. “It’s updated all the time.”
Thomas said that two more varieties of olives are currently on consideration. “Eventually, we plan to offer about a dozen different olive products. Keep an eye on the line of Brothers of Mercy olives; we keep growing,” he said.
For more information you can contact Br. Kenneth Thomas at 716-759-7658 or Kenneth@BrothersOfMercy.org, or Pam Kloc, Marketing and Public Relations, at 716-759-7604 or Pam@BrothersOfMercy.org.
Article courtesy of Pam Kloc