How an Encinitas-Based Olive Oil Brand Is Giving Back to Palestine
Organic, fair trade extra virgin olive oil company Harvest Peace is helping Palestinian farmers, one tree at a time
Palestine may not be the first place you think of when you hear “olive oil”—Italy or Spain usually gets the credit—but olive crops account for 45 percent of cultivated land in the Middle Eastern country. To shine a light on the region, Leucadia resident and first-generation Palestinian Jenny Farhat has launched Harvest Peace, a line of certified organic, fair trade extra virgin olive oils cultivated by farmers from her home country.
32-year-old Farhat has seen her family’s groves destroyed in the region’s longstanding conflict—800,000 olive trees have been lost in the area since 1967—but wants to help those whose livelihoods depend on the crop. All bottles start with cold-pressed oils stored underground in steel drums to maintain optimal flavor.
Farhat partnered with Canaan Fair Trade and the Palestine Fair Trade Association to oversee proper compensation and quality control, and in early February, she organized a Kickstarter campaign to offset initial startup costs. Plus, Harvest Peace dedicates a portion of the proceeds of each bottle sold to replanting olive trees in Palestine ($24.99 for 16 oz.). It’s a new way to extend the olive branch.