Another harvest completed. The final total of olives is 6.3 tons, with 1,4 tons of olive oil. We also pickled 90 kilos of eating olives, kind of a test run. The yield was a bit disappointing, especially the Nabali and Shimlali olives. But the oil content was high, averaging around 22%.
We also had a couple samples tested for acidity. Acidity under 0.8% is considered extra virgin, the top quality. Our tests came back at 0.35% and 0.15%. Simply superb.
I drove over to Khirbat al Misbach to visit with Ata and his family, and to pick up some oil for this years Salaam Shalom Peace oil. Until now I always met Ata at the gas station to make the exchange. This time I went with Tom G. into the village, leaving the car at the gas station, and driving in with Ata and his son. We were treated warmly and royally, with lots of amazing food and lots of relatives to meet. I wish I could bring my Israeli friends to meet all the warm sincere people in the village. Economically things didn't sound too good.
We have begun pruning the trees, and its going great. We were joined for the last day of picking and a day of pruning by Mark and Karen, who have helped for the last 3 seasons. What super people, and amazing workers. They came with their friend Amy. Mindy dropped by for breakfast and the last 11 minutes of olive picking.
The forest fire in the Carmel region appears to be winding down after causing massive death and destruction. But this disaster had human fingerprints all over it on several levels.
We're still waiting for the cold and especially the rain to arrive. Forecasters are calling for rain tomorrow night. Can't wait.
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I'm Dani Livney, a member of Kibbutz Gezer, and the manager of the Gezer olives. I love it! I also work as a lawyer, focusing on environmental projects and promoting environmental empowerment and education.