Sunday, January 8, 2012

Another Aspect of Gaza's Flourishing Economy

The Coordination and Liaison office in "Erez" crossing, had a training and advanced study sessions for florists from the Gaza strip,

"The Palestinians are planning to export and market the carnation flowers from the Gaza strip for quite a while and now that the export season is beginning, they arrived to study how to better their product and understand how to input the knowledge they acquired from the harvesting,
the packing and the importance of maintaining the proper temperature and the actual export." Said the officer of agriculture in the Coordination and Liaison office in Gaza, Mr. Uri Madar.

The beginning of the marketing process is set to last approximately 6 months and end in May, when the peak of the export shall be around Christmas during December, and around the European Valentine's day in February, which brings the consumption of flowers to a peak and the Palestinian production is proud to be a part of this flourishing economy.

The growing of the flowers themselves is only a part of the process. Eventually, the quality is the main component affecting the profit, and the farmers' work is based on the knowledge they acquired in Israel.

The 180 acres of the carnation flower that are spread in the Rafah area, have a growing potential of 25 million flowers which will bring the Gaza strip approximately a profit of 18 million NIS.

To well exploit the short season that had just begun, the Palestinians must maximize the production, maintain the flower's quality and in parallel compete with other hard working competitors in countries such as Columbia and Kenya which market their flowers in the Netherlands, which are of a higher quality which the clients clearly prefer.

The number of workers on the project clearly grows during the export time period and will take up about 540 workers, and is expected to provide about 100,000 work days for the Palestinian workers.

The study sessions that were given by professionals and Israeli flower guides were supported by the "Park Organization", and the government of Holland. These sessions were not to qualify the Rafah farmers just for this export season,
but to acquire them with the helpful knowledge they could use to better their crop and the area's agriculture in general, enter a variety of crops in to the world's market while standing in the international standards.
During the sessions, the topic of changing the growing crops in Gaza, since the Carnation flower is "suffering" from low consumption for the past few years and that is why another day of meeting and studying was agreed upon in January 2012,
with the topic of changing the flowers growing in the area, where new brands will be suggested and proposed in regard to the suitable macro climate in the area.

The Palestinian farmers that are proud of their home crops, will soon use all of the display stages possible to show their product. Who ever would like to visit and get a first impression of the product,
will be able to do so in two main exhibitions in which the Palestinian farmers will take part: The international flower exhibition in Berlin in the beginning of September 2012, during which the farmers will present their home grown carnation flowers in the Palestinian booth, which Holland's government will help set up.

Another exhibition is the Israeli flower exhibition in the Botanical gardens in Jerusalem in April 2012. As a part of the exhibition a booth for these farmers is planned to present their local carnation flowers.

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