The olive crop accounts for an estimated nearly 45% of the cultivated land in Palestine, and can reach almost 19% of the country’s agricultural output. (Agriculture alone represents nearly 25% of Palestine’s GDP.) Some studies suggest that 100,000 families depend in some way on the olive crop—whether through sales revenue or the everyday consumption of the olives and olive oil. On average, Palestinian farmers face drastically low wages and some of the highest poverty rates in the world; even a modest increase in revenue, and the implementation of fair trade practices, can make a life-changing difference.
WHY OLIVE OIL?
True sustainability before it was cool.
Palestine’s climate, consisting of dry, hot, windy summers and damp, cold winters, provides the ideal conditions for olive trees to thrive. (And they’ve flourished for thousands of years—likely before the arrival of people to the region!) For the people of Palestine, agriculture is more than a source of income. It’s central to their history, identity and self-expression.