Abu Mus’ab is from the village of Maythaloon, south of the city of Jenin. Maythaloon farmers are famous for growing pulses and grains, in addition to olive trees. Abu Mus’ab takes us on a tour of the village explaining to us the different phases that village farmers went through that finally led to the establishment of a committee for organic production. After being forced to industrialize their agricultural production for decades with the introduction of pesticides, fertilizers, and irrigation schemes, the farmers have struggled to make any profit out of their produce, and actually started to realize that their lands are becoming less and less fertile. This is when the decision was taken to return to traditional methods of farming, aiming to grow baladi products such as simsim (sesame), wheat, beans, barley, and hummus for domestic and market clients. While sometimes when the production of sesame is small, they utilize chemical fertilizers, but their other crops like pumpkins and okra are still 100% chemical-free. They also grow seasonal vegetables. Many of their products are being processed and packaged by the women cooperative of Maythaloon.
What a delight it was to find out how the baladi simsim is grown, harvested, sun-dried, and collected. Sesame has been a source of nutrition for thousands of years. Whether it is the seeds or the oil, it is a delight to taste the fresh seeds surrounded by roman time olive trees.
Product Availability: Seasonal.
Selling Points: Currently through wholesalers and orders.
Volunteering Opportunities: Volunteers are welcome. For details, contact Abu Mus’ab.