Fair Trade Za’Atar from Palestine
We just got a new shipment from our friends at Canaan Fair Trade, who represent the rural cooperatives of Palestine.
Canaan’s Za’atar starts as wild growing thyme in the Jamma’in mountains south of Nablus and Sanour mountain near Jenin. The wild collection is done by their Jamma’in cooperative with 18 women members and is a certified organic collection by IMO of Switzerland. Organic wild collection ensures the sustainability of the plant in its natural environment. The preparation of the Za’atar is also certified fair trade, done by their al-Jalam cooperative, north of Jenin, with 7 women members. They use the dried wild thyme leaves, grind them and combine them with locally grown roasted sesame seeds, sumac berry powder, and a touch of Dead Sea salt. Palestinian sesame seeds are superior in taste to the African sesame commonly used in commercial za’atar. And, unlike commercial varieties, there is no citric acid in this za’atar.
Canaan Fair Trade is committed to sustainable farming practices. They work directly with rural communities in Palestine to bring their traditional products to the international community. Canaan guarantees a fair price to farmers and producers even when markets are low. A fair price or ‘living wage’ allows producers to cover the cost of harvest and tree maintenance while providing food, shelter, education, and medical care for their families. Canaan also requires that farm workers be paid one-third of the crop in good seasons and one-half of the crop in bad seasons.
The Za’Atar will be in our online store later today; when you add it to their olive oil it’s just perfect for dipping bread. Enjoy!