Faisal Barghouti

Conscious Choices
Faisal Barghouti

   Faisal is an energetic and skilful filmmaker and farmer. The story with his farm might seem ordinary at the beginning, but in fact, it is an inspirational representation of Palestinian rootedness in the land, passed down over generations. Faisal’s grandfather owned a plot of land since 1945 and it was the location of many family visits during the olive harvest, seasonal preparation of the land, and outings. His memories of the teachings of his grandfather are still vivid in his mind and he deploys them on a daily basis. The flora of the region, the names of medicinal plants, how to deal with wild animals, and how to care for trees are all ingrained in his mind. This knowledge came in handy in 2002 when Faisal was locked in the farm with 2,000 chickens for 40 days during a curfew in the second intifada.

   The 40 dunums that Faisal and his family own are on a mountaintop and they have fought hard and creatively to hold on tightly to it, from facing down occupation forces to constructing an agricultural road to stopping settlement expansion by securing the hilltop with plantings and maintaining a presence there. Faisal is proud of his resistance and says it has encouraged other farmers to follow suit. In fact, a handful of farmers have returned to their lands in the area in the last decade, especially when the agricultural road was constructed.

   Faisal does not believe in quick results. He compares himself to his grandfather who planted the olive trees with his bare hands only so his grandchildren could reap the harvest. He is planning on starting a project that he believes might not reach its peak for many years but he is determined to start with small steps. His dream is to turn the farm into a multi-purpose ecological village and to expand its production lines to include cheese, seasonal vegetables, and fruits. He also plans to use chemical-free farming in the farm. Basically, he hopes one day to create a self-sustaining, cultural venue for artists and environmentalists alike. Faisal believes that seven basic products are needed for survival, which he produces in the farm. They are eggs, bread, vinegar, olive oil, cheese, milk, and meat. Faisal’s dreams are big and he is trying to achieve them the hard way by sticking to his principles of not dealing with interest- laden bank loans, which he believes are serving the Palestinian elite. He is looking for partners who believe in those same principles and if that is you, then get in touch.


Product Season: Work on the farm is year-round. 

Product Availability: Faisal’s products are still not available in the market

Volunteering opportunities: Volunteers are welcome and the work will depend on the needs of the farm. 
Other services: Housing and tours can be offered upon request and prior coordination.