Abu Kamal

Palestinian Farmer speaks in St Andrews

Abu Kamal, a Palestinian olive farmer visited St Andrews during Fairtrade Fortnight to talk about how Fairtrade has made a difference to his life

Abu Kamal, a Fairtrade olive farmer in Palestine toured Scotland during Fairtrade Fortnight telling audiences of how FT has changed his life, allowing him to sell his olives to produce Zaytoun Olive oil. This is a premium brand of Extra Virgin Olive oil which is sold around the world. Abu Kamal came to St Andrews on 10 March 2012, with his interpreter Manal Abdallah and Deirdre Muldowney of the Scottish Fairtrade Forum. As well as the talk, students from the Food Cooperative had a stall with Palestinian products and the audience were treated to an olive oil tasting with delicious bread made by the students. Over 50 people attended the event.

Abu Kamal became a Fairtrade olive producer in 2005. Before that he said that with the price he got for his olives, it was hardly worth the effort of producing them. Now, with Zaytoun olive oil he has a global market, and is able to plant more trees and send his children to University. He also told us, with the help of Manal, of the difficulties facing Palestinian farmers in tending their olive groves, harvesting them and getting the final product out of Palestine through Israel - taxes are levied to allow the product out. He made it very clear that our support and demand for Zaytoun olive oil is vital for farmers like him.

Updated: 3rd April 2012