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Olive oil is traditionally from the olives of the Mediterranean Basin and the Palestine region. By following Fair Trade standards, thousands of olive farmers are brought into the marketplace and system of production for olive oil.
Since January of 2009, the Fair Labelling Organizations and TransFair USA have offered certification for olive
oil, and Canaan olive oil and olives (below) are certified Fair Trade by both.
Fair Trade Olive Cooperative
Canaan Fair Trade Association
Jenin, Palestine Region
profile from Canaan
Based in Jenin in the Palestinian region, Canaan Fair Trade sells products produced by over 1,700 small farmers organized in informal cooperatives and represented by the Palestine Fair Trade Association (PFTA). Canaan is also a certified member of the Fair Trade Federation and is certified by TransFair USA.
Canaan Fair Trade uses the Fair Trade concept to empower marginalized Palestinian rural communities caught in conflict so they can sustain their livelihoods and culture. It works to establish direct working relationships with farming communities and pay sustainable prices for agricultural products to ensure fair wages for labor along the supply chain.
Canaan guarantees farmers a 10% Fair Trade premium above the market price and a 10% organic premium above the market. Specifically, Canaan returns 1% of its purchases from a co-op to the respective producing co-op committee for community projects. In addition, 1% of the sum of its purchases from all the co-ops is returned to the PFTA for its general programs. Canaan supports community projects through the Trees for Life program that plants trees and distributes new seedlings to small farmers, and through the Canaan Scholarship Fund that awards full tuition higher education scholarships to children. In communities, Canaan supports and facilitates educational workshops and the distribution of educational material on Fair Trade, organic farming, and quality standards and enhancement.
By giving incentives to produce a high quality product, Canaan and its partners hope to reestablish traditional sustainable farming as an avenue for Palestinian farmers earning a livelihood. Fair trade provides a vehicle for alternative cultural expression and the opportunity for communities caught in conflict to connect with the outside world.