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Zaytoun August newsletter

Palestinian fields and homes are a hive of activity this month, with almond season, and maftoul season coinciding. Check our Facebook albums for some beautiful images as the harvests are brought home, and read on for more about how maftoul is made. Also this month, updates on the situation for Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza, and an exciting month coming up - Organic September!

Ethical Consumer rating

We are delighted to have received a top rating from Ethical Consumer for the way we do business!
Written by Sarah Javaid from the Muslim Agency for Development Education, the article explains how Islam can support ethical consumerism, outlining 5 areas of specific teachings as follows
  • Living simply
  • Workers' rights and fair trade
  • Ethical finance
  • Animal welfare
  • Protecting the environment
In a review of 5 companies popular in the Muslim community for supporting Palestinian producers, Zaytoun received a top ranking for our relationships with our suppliers, our support of fair trade practices, and for environmental reporting.

Speciality & Fine Food Fair

Zaytoun will be at the Speciality & Fine Food Fair 2015 from 6th-8th September at London Olympia.

If you are coming, we'd love to see you! Perhaps your local delicatessen or independent grocery owners are planning to visit - let them know Zaytoun is at stand 2453!


Zaytoun's organic maftoul is a Palestinian speciality - a firm, nutty grain that's great as a basis for stews and salads alike. 

In Palestine it's maftoul season now - organic bulgur and wholewheat flour is hand-rolled by women, giving it a characteristic uneven shape and large size that lends texture to hearty dishes such as mujaddara (featured as our recipe of the month, above). Sara, from Deir Ballout village, is pictured above teaching her granddaughter the time-honoured way to roll the wheat.

Once rolled, the maftoul is spread out to dry in the glorious Palestinian sunshine, leaving it golden and full of flavour.

Zaytoun's maftoul was once sourced from Gazan farmers. Sadly since the lockdown on Gaza, we are no longer able to source from Gaza. Our maftoul now comes from PFTA co-operatives in the northern West Bank.

Annie Levy's fascinating blog Kitchen Culture featured Gazan writer Um Hasna talking about her mother's maftoul and its place in her family home. In her words "If you’re ever in Palestine, making and eating maftoul is the best way to blend in and feel at home."

For more images from the Palestinian maftoul season, check our Facebook album.

August recipe

In celebration of maftoul season in Palestine, we are featuring Um Hikmat's mujaddara recipe this month.

Usually made with rice, Um Hikmat substitutes maftoul to make a truly mouthwatering and filling dish. 


Zaytoun has highlighted this campaign on social media as one of all too many cases where Israel repeatedly demolishes homes, clinics and schools built on Palestinian land. The B'TSelem report chronicles the history of Susiya and its lands here. 
The political and legal campaign in support of Susiya residents has been widespread, and following the location of deeds dating to Ottoman times which confirm that the village is built on private land, the demolition is no longer imminent. 

Other villages remain in danger, as illegal settlers continue to push for the expulsion of Palestinians from their ancestral lands.

Keep up to date with the #SaveSusiya campaign on Twitter,  Facebook or blog page.

Organic September

Zaytoun will be joining in a national month or celebration of organic products. Led by the Soil Association, who certify some of our products, the campaign aims to raise awareness of the many benefits of buying organic - for health, the environment, the farmers and their animals. 

We will be posting promotions and competitions on social media and our website - so be sure to keep checking back in on Facebook and Twitter!
To celebrate Organic September, Wholefoods Market are offering our organic 500ml olive oil at 20% off, from 2nd to 29th September! 

Gaza - one year on

One year ago, Israel waged a sustained and devastating assault on Gaza, lasting 51 days. By August 26th, over 2,200 Palestinians had been killed and much of Gaza reduced to rubble.

Since a ‘ceasefire’ was announced, Israel has continued to attack Gaza. It refuses to allow essential building materials into the Strip, leaving the Palestinians unable to rebuild their homes and their infrastructure. Families continue to live among the rubble of their houses, without electricity or running water. Aid agencies report that malnutrition is spreading.

All this has been inflicted on a population living under occupation and siege. The Palestine Solidarity Campaign is calling on the UK government to exert immediate pressure on Israel, including sanctions, so that it abides by international law, ends its attacks on Gaza, lifts the blockade and ends the occupation.

To sign their petition and support the call to action, click here.


Zaytoun products can be found at events around the country here. If you are running a stall, film screening or Zaytoun tasting - let us know, we'll share your news!

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