Conscious Choices: A Guide to Ethical Shopping in Palestine
This guide introduces you to the concept of shopping ethically in Palestine. It will offer you some guidance during the first steps of becoming an ethical consumer, shopping more consciously, and making informed decisions regarding your eating and living habits. We do not offer a magical, all-encompassing list of things to do or producers to buy from, but we aim to raise awareness about the potential we have harnessed in our hardworking farmers and creative artisans. Next time you plan on buying a special present, or cook a seasonal meal, we invite you to flip through the pages of this guide for some inspiration. We feel assured that once you start approaching your shopping choices in this way, you will develop a similar list of producers and artisans that you know in your neighbourhood or town, or ones that you have met in person or heard about from your friends. Take note of these, put extra effort into getting to know their stories, try their products, and make ethical choices about how you deal with them in the future.
The faces portrayed in this guide are not (entirely) the same as in the previous edition. As we began our update of this guide, we contacted many of our original producers. With a heavy heart, we listened to many producers sharing the difficulty of persevering. Some have stopped producing due to old age, like Hajeh Amneh from Salfit, while others struggled to make ends meet and simply gave up or changed their approach to production, opting for mass production or compromising the quality and sources of their input material. Many of the producers we met are carrying out food and cultural preservation ‘on the side’, as a hobby or a genuine interest rooted in a sense of responsibility for sharing traditional knowledge across generations. In parallel with that trend, we witnessed emerging initiatives and producers, especially among the young generation, that call for the revival of local and ethical production as a basis for resilience and preservation of identity and culture. Thus, we feel an even bigger responsibility now to highlight their stories and support ethical consumerism in Palestine.