Zaytoun's monthly newsletter

all the latest news, product stories, campaigns, events and much more!

Zaytoun September newsletter

This month we celebrate a bumper crop of almonds being harvested in Palestine! The harvest is 150% up on last year's crop, and we have beautiful pictures on our Facebook pages, thanks to Manal Abdallah of Canaan Fair Trade. Try our mouthwatering almond recipe below and treat yourself to some mouth-watering caramelised almonds, on special offer while stocks last.

We feature our new stunning Bethlehem Baubles - fairly traded artisan Christmas decorations celebrating centuries of traditional skilled craft in Bethlehem, Hebron and Beit Sahour.

Also inspiring news from Orkney Friends of Palestine, who are halfway through their 2013 target of sponsoring 1000 new saplings to be planted in Palestine - read on to find out how they do it. And sad news of the destruction of dozens of trees near Nablus - more reason to give a gift of a sapling to a farming community. Find out how to get involved in Trees for Life below.

Did you miss our August newsletter? Catch up here
Kollag picture

Recipe of the month

Kollaj loaves

It's almond season in Palestine! And to celebrate we have this wonderful recipe using these yummy nuts...a dessert of filo dough filled with crushed almond and cinnamon, and then baked in the oven.."Sahha w Afyeh"! Bon Appetit!

And for pictures of the beautiful almond flowers through to the harvest, along with the farming families who work so hard to bring the harvest home, check our Facebook album

1 packet of filo pastry or Kollaj loaves (available in Arab stores)
1 cup of sugar
1 tsp of lemon
3 tbsp of cinnamon
5 packs of Zaytoun almonds (75g/pack)
Butter/Arabic Samneh

Prepare Sugar Syrup:

    Add 1 cup of sugar with 1 and a 1/2 cup of water and stir lightly until it boils.
    When boils, add 1 tea spoon of lemon and stir for another minute, then, leave aside.

Prepare Kollaj Rolls:

    Crush almonds with a mortar and pestle or with a mixer. (Roast almonds in a pan on a stove before crushing for more taste).

    Mix 5 tbsp of sugar, 3 tbsp of cinnamon, and crushed almonds together in a bowl, and set aside. Picture here

    Oil a tray with a light layer of butter using a brush.

    Cut kollaj loaves into smaller parts, then fill each part with 2 tbsp of the cinnamon, sugar, and almond mix. (see how here)

    Fold the sides of the kollaj pastry and then roll them as if you're rolling grape-leaves. (they should look like this)

    Set out rows of kollaj in the oiled tray 

    When all kollaj rolls are in the tray, brush the surface of the kollaj with butter.

    Bake the kollaj rolls until the color turns golden -around 12-15 minutes. (it should look like this)

    Pour sugar syrup into kollaj pieces and put it in the oven for another minute, garnish with Pistachi (optional), and serve it hot.

Salfit district loses lands

Israel presses ahead with settlement expansion - in Salfit district, central West Bank, a very fertile area of farmland and villages, Palestinians are losing land to the illegal Leshim settlement. According to news report, the Israeli Housing Minister, Uri Ariel, placed the corner stone of this illegal settlement.

The Salfit district is one of the most impacted districts due to Israel’s illegal settlement activities as it contains 23 Israeli settlements swallowing more than half of Salfit’s farmlands. Zaytoun harvest trip participants have for many years helped Salfit area farmers harvest their olives.

Trees for Life

Orkney Friends of Palestine have reached their halfway point in funding 1000 new saplings in Palestine in 2013!

Congratulations to everyone who has worked so hard to raise the profile of Palestinian farmers and to all those who have donated to Trees for Life so far. Below we profile OFoP and the work they do - if you have an inspiring story to tell about your group, or your fundraising support for farmers, please let us know for our next newsletter!

OFoP’s 1000 Olive Tree campaign was launched in May 2013 and by August 2013 had raised £2,726 [i.e. 680 trees] towards the target of the £4,000 required for 1000 trees. OFoP members have been delighted by the response from the Orkney community to their campaign.  A spectrum of large and smaller donations have contributed to the fund, raised through some great fundraising activities.

Finally, members of OFoP are looking forward to being able to forge a link, via Zaytoun and PFTA, with one or more of the West Bank communities which receive significant numbers of the trees that their campaign has funded. Specific, more personal, links of this kind are greatly motivating in enlisting support for Palestinians from amongst a local community.

Find out how your community can fund saplings in Palestine - go to our Trees for Life page

Yummy caramelised almonds!

To celebrate a bumper almond harvest, and because we know so many of you love our caramelised almonds, we're offering 1 free case for every 4 cases you order. They make a great lunchbox snack, and (thinking ahead a little!) a perfect stocking filler for Christmas! The offer will be for a limited period only so please place your orders soon to avoid disappointment 

Bethlehem Baubles

Zaytoun is delighted to be offering Bethlehem Baubles as a new product for Christmas 2013. These beautiful baubles are produced by Palestinian artisans in Bethlehem, Hebron and Beit Sahour. Each decoration is carefully hand-made by local skilled glass blowers and brought to you directly from the birthplace of Christmas.

Hebron has a centuries old tradition of glass blowing, since Roman rule in Palestine, and Hebron's Old City still contains a quarter named the "Glass-Blower Quarter". Glass production is a family trade, the secrets of which have been preserved and passed down by a few Palestinian families who operate the glass factories located just outside the city.

Three hand blown and hand painted Bethlehem Baubles are packed into locally crafted wooden boxes. These boxes are made to protect and store the baubles so they can be cherished for a lifetime and perhaps even become a collection over the years. When they hang on the Christmas tree they will be a poignant reminder of the origins of Christmas.
By buying Bethlehem Baubles you will help to generate local jobs in the Bethlehem area, which faces high unemployment under the conditions of a long standing and brutal military occupation. 

Email us for prices and an order form

Settlers destroy dozens of trees

News from Ma'an agency that settlers destroyed over 25 olive trees near Nablus in late August. Ghassan Daghlas, who monitors settlement activity in the northern West Bank, told Ma'an that the attack took place in an area between Huwwara and Burin. Settlers destroyed over 25 trees. The fields belong to Hasan Bani Salem.





6 September, 12-3pm
Palmers Green Mosque, Oakthorpe Rd N13

14 September 9-5pm
Stop the War Conference
The Old Cinema, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, London W1B 2UW 

22 September  
Hidden River Festival 11:00 until 17:00
American Garden, Finsbury Park (North East corner) 

04 October, 12-3pm
Palmers Green Mosque, Oakthorpe Rd N13 

Every Sunday
St John's Wood Church, Lord's Roundabout, St John's Wood NW8 7NE 020 7586 3864 
Stall after Sunday services
for more details

20 September, 7.30pm
Strode Theatre, Street 01458 442846
Screening of Five Broken Cameras
Taking five years and five damaged cameras to make, this documentary was shot entirely by Palestinian peasant farmer Emad Burnat. Chronicling the events in his village, both private and public, we witness a fence, then a wall, going up on the villagers’ land, while peaceful protests lead to the arrests of friends and family.
"A gripping piece of political activism; an arresting piece of cinema that plunges the viewer into the face of conflict"

Costs £7.50/ full concessions £6.50

30 September, 7.30pm
Trinity Hall
"Experiences of Occupation". A talk by Jane Harries, recently returned from a time as Ecumenical Accompaniment programme in Palestine (more on this here Organised by Frome Quakers and Frome Friends of Palestine  

6 September
lford Mill buffet/supper. Tickets £20 including drinks
Fund raising event to bring over a group of young Palestian dancers.
Tel: Joanna for tickets on 07768091684

15 September 11am-4pm
Melksham Food Festival, grounds of Melksham House Melksham,Wiltshire SN12 6ES-behind Town Hall
This event is free.

21 September 10am-4pm
Trowbridge County Hall.
South West Fairtrade Day 2013-Development in Fairtrade
The day is open to all Fairtrade supporters with free admission including lunch, but you must
book a place so that you can be included for lunch.
Telephone Viv Kynaston on 01225 683647

West Midlands
21 September 4-7pm
Lichfield Methodist Church,
Tamworth Street, WS13 6JH
World Week of Prayer and Action for a Just Peace in Palestine & Israel
Come and meet Gwen Blackwell from the Women’s International Solidarity Movement, who has worked in and around Bil’in, (the West Bank town featured in the film “5 Broken Cameras”)and is a founder member of the Liverpool-Bil’in Twinning Link
Photographic exhibition of Bil’in
4.00 - 5.30 pm: Palestinian Market with  crafts, olive oil and food products -  an opportunity to buy Christmas presents.
5.45 pm: tea
7 pm:  Illustrated talk : Question and answer session with Gwen Blackwell

Where to purchase Zaytoun products

Zaytoun is delighted that we now have nationwide coverage for our range of Palestinian products.

The products can be obtained through a number of outlets:

Zaytoun products now available in Oxfam shops! Use this shop finder to find your nearest one

Thanks to Premcrest for making all of our products available via their online shop

Regional distributors remain the back bone of Zaytoun, both in terms of distributing products and also in terms of spreading the message of issues faced by Palestinian farmers. To find your nearest distributors please see: 

Online and retail distribution for the products has grown really well this year and this link lists online and retail outlets for Zaytoun products:

Wholesale all Zaytoun’s products are now available through wholesalers so if you don’t see the products at your local retailers please let them know they are available through the following wholesalers:

Please note these lists are regularly updated with new and changing outlets so please do check back and let us know if you would like to add new listings to this list by emailing

PEA-ple's Favourite Award

Please vote for Zaytoun!

If you haven't already done so, please visit to place your Twitter vote. Deadline 24 September!


Retailer of the month

This month we're celebrating our friends UNICORN GROCERY in Manchester. Not only have they been stocking and promoting the Zaytoun range for many years now, they also regularly host events including farmer talks during Fairtrade Fortnight, and the upcoming event 'Food Sovereignty - Reclaiming the Global Food System'. Monday 30th September.

They won The Observer Food Monthly's 'Best Independent Shop' and Radio 4 Food Programme's 'Best Local Food Retailer’ in 2008, and they continue to offer is affordable, wholesome food with a focus on organic, fair-trade and local sourcing.  The shop is full of information about trade and food issues, and aims to help customers make informed shopping choices. Unicorn donates a steady 5% of wage costs to local and international projects relating to its Principles of Purpose. It also contributes to a tree planting scheme with a carbon tax in an attempt to offset some of the environmental impact of running the business. 

If you're anywhere nearby, please pay them a visit - they're at 89 Albany Road, Chorlton, Manchester M21 0BN.
Tel: 0161 861 0010

Call for events

A call-out to all our distributors and retailers 

Please do think about anything coming up in the next few months, especially Christmas events as they start happening in November - we'd love to publicise your stalls, tastings, shop displays and promotions, but need to know about them as soon as you have all the details ready so we can include them on our newsletter and where appropriate, on our website too.

And if you have lovely pictures of your event to share we'd like to put them in our newsletter too - share the inspiration!

Wadi Fuqeen road closed

Israeli authorities have issued notification of their intent to close down an agricultural road in the village of Wadi Fuqeen, six miles south-east of Bethlehem. The road was constructed about 18 months ago by the village council to help farmers gain access to their land with mechanised vehicles. Within a few weeks of construction, it became an essential village road, used not just by farmers. 
The village is already subject to multiple Israeli orders which restrict the Palestinians’ use of their own land. For example, the Israelis have put demolition orders on trees and animals shelters, as well as agricultural terracing. Plus, hundreds of dunams of villagers’ land have already been confiscated for use by the nearby illegal settlement of Beitar Illit. The village is now completely surrounded by the illegal Israeli settlements.

Greenbelt Festival 2013

Zaytoun had a good presence at the festival this year, with John Logan having excellent sales at his stall over the weekend, and Embrace the Middle East promoting their Zaytoun hamper that will be available via their Autumn catalogue.  See their website for more details

The launch of “Time For Action” was a pivotal moment at the festival this year.  This is the  British response to the Kairos Palestine document which was sent out by the churches in Palestine, calling for churches around the world to work together for justice and peace in the region and bring to end the apartheid regime.  The word ‘Kairos’ is the Greek word for “time” or more accurately “this is the right or critical time or moment”. As with the Kairos South Africa document launched in 1985 it calls for positive and non-violent action.  If you would like to download the full document please use this link and the response “Time for Action” can be read via this link

The launch venue was full and the men and women involved in pulling this together included the artist Meg Wroe who said, we can all do something to help and suggested we all start by purchasing Zaytoun olive oil! Zaytoun looks forward to being part of this positive response and we are listed as one of the resources at the back of the document.

If you are connected with a church community of any denomination then it would be worth asking the church leader if they are aware of this initiative.

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