To anyone familiar with Palestinian olive agriculture, this is a ‘no-brainer’, since Palestinian farmers do not generally use pesticides or chemical fertilizers on olive trees. [Fertilizers have been generally unavailable in the West Bank even to vegetable farmers on the pretext that they may be used as bomb making material]
However, the issue of certifiying and labeling the oil as organic is a completely different question. PARC has an 18-month project that includes international certifying organizations to obtain certification for the oil as organic.
We have been informed that the Organic Cooperative of Keereh, Salfit area will get its certification starting with the next harvest. Once that happens, Holy Land Olive Oil will sell the certified oil under its own brand.
In the US, there are complex Federal and State rules governing organic products. Holy Land Olive Oil is investigating the PARC certification program as a first step to find if the certifying organizations are on the USDA’s list of Accredited Certifying Agents, or have any accreditation status with the USDA.
Depending on the outcome of our investigation, the oilve oil bottle that you buy may or may not have an indication on the label as to its organic status. Regardless, you can rest assured that the olive oil you buy is high quality and free from the stigma and scandal that has affected so many olive oil brands on the US market. [Click here to read about the scandal]