The Palestinian Ministry of Agriculture on Thursday inaugurated the olive picking and milling season for 2022, in the presence of officials and in the participation with members of the Legislative Council, mayors of municipalities, institutions and farmers.
The opening ceremony was accompanied by artistic performances and stalls providing local products.
The attendees participated in the olive-picking process, and wore the Palestinian keffiyeh and traditional clothes. This season is being used to mark the importance of the olive tree, what it represents to Palestinians and their history, and the high nutritional value of its fruit in terms of the oil extracted from it.
The Ministry of Agriculture said the olive tree expresses the Palestinian identity and our steadfastness against attempts to rob our history and heritage. This olive season is the best in recent years due to the abundance of production and the expansion of the cultivated areas, the ministry said, explaining that the areas planted with olives this year are estimated at 43,000 dunams (43 square kilometres), with an average production rate of one tonne per dunam.
It is hoped that this increase in yield will allow Gaza's farmers to cover the needs of the local market, and achieve self-sufficiency in oil and olives. It is also hoped that some of the produce can be exported across the Arab world and further afield.
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