In an area of Italy more often associated with fish and the sea for the casual visitor, the cultivation of olives is one of Puglia's greatest resources and economic certainties.
To the extent that it can claim to be an emblem for the area and indeed most of Italy's mass consumed olive oil originates from the region.
It all started in the 18th century when a young Charles Bourbon proposed a reduction in taxes to the larger landowners in return for their help in cultivating olives.
Today, 50 million olive trees exist from those initial saplings. There are around 240,000 farms operating in the sector.
Hence, Puglia is Italy's top regional producer of olive oil with around 40% of total output. Next is Calabria with 27%.
The rest are simply also-rans in terms of volume and there are a few surprises.
Tuscany only supplies the market with 3%, less than Abruzzo and Lazio.
Campania and Sicily are in 3rd and 4th positions with 7% and 6% respectively, while Emilia Romagna, Liguria and Veneto dont even get above 1%.
Umbria accounts for 2%.
For the record, Puglia also accounts for 38% of the total land in Italy dedicated to cultivating olives.
For the more romantic minded the olive represents the cultural soul of the Pugliese; solid, austere, immortal, generous and possessing an ancient civility.
Above all, an ability to adapt and thrive in poor circumstances.
Experts say that the olive oil from Puglia is some of the most palatable in the world, characterised by its digestibility and high vitamin content.
For the best of the best purchase the oil made from the zones of 'Bitonto', 'Cerignola' and 'Andria', all fairly close together in the province of Bari.
To get to know it close up seek out the signposted 'Terra d'Ulivi' Olive Oil Route.
It is an association recognized by the Regione Puglia whose aim is to valorize, in particular, the extra virgin dop olive oil 'Cima di Bitonto' as well as the beauty and history of the area where the olives are cultivated
To get your bearings this includes Molfetta, Giovinazzo, Bitonto, Terlizzi and Ruvo di Puglia, as well as Palo del Colle, Bitetto, Grumo Appula, Toritto, Sannicandro, Sammichele di Bari, Acquaviva delle Fonti, Santeramo in Colle, Bitritto, Capurso and Cellamare.
Each locaity has its own related festival during the year. For example on 16 August in Toritto the Sagra della Cervellata takes place where you can enjoy roast lamb and mushroom dishes.