By Cellia Shani
Spice grower representatives from Israel and Gaza have agreed to establish a joint-export channel of spices, strawberries, lemons, and flowers to Europe.
The joint Gaza channel is expected to generate NIS 20 million of revenue in 2013. “Israeli farmers have experienced successful joint cooperation in the past with Palestinians through Agrexco, ” said Haim Hadad, secretary-general of Israel’s Flower Growers Association. “The desire of both parties to make a living is large and increasing due to political and security difficulties. The Europeans are welcoming the initiative and are pleased to do their part and place orders.”
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Under the agreement, Palestinian Authority produce will set out from Gaza every morning to be packaged in Israeli Flowers Council packing plants in the Sharon district. They will then be exported abroad.
The project will be administered through a shared computer system operated by the Flower Growers Association and Gaza farmers, so Palestinian exporters can know at any given time where a shipment is located and what proceeds have been received.
Israeli and Palestinian farmers will hold regular meetings in Europe to strengthen the cooperation and open new marketing channels.