Israel to spend NIS 200m. on fruit for Tu Bishvat

Federation of Israeli Chambers of Commerce: Israel to spend 300% over average on dried fruit to celebrate festival of the trees.

By
January 24, 2013 15:25
1 minute read.
Pomegranate

Pomegranate. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

What could a country like Israel do with NIS 200 million? It could nearly fund an election (the government budgeted NIS 246 milliion this year), or it could buy an 850 square meter penthouse in a swanky Tel Aviv building currently under construction on Arlozoroff street, or it could buy enough dried fruit for the whole country to celebrate Tu Bishvat.

According to the agricultural branch of the Federation of Israeli Chambers of Commerce, that's how much Israel will spend this year on dried fruit for the holiday of trees, 300% more than on an average month. In fact, in 2012, a third of all dried fruit was sold during the Tu Bishvat season. Some 75% of all Israeli households are expected to purchase dates, apricot, prunes, figs and raisins—the top-selling dry fruits—for the holiday, which marks the start of the biblical agricultural year and is celebrated with a feast of fruits.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


"This year, 3-4% growth is expected in dry fruit in Israeli households," says Reuven Shlisil, who heads the FICC's agricultural branch.

But the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Labor worries that some people will be overpaying for the sweet stuff for something that clashes with Tu Bishvat's more recent environmental message: packaging.

Tamar Pinkus, who heads the Ministry's legal department, warns consumers: "Pay attention to what you're supposed to pay for your purchase, and verify that the weight of the product you're asking for is the net weight of the product. You're not required to pay for extras such as packaging without your knowledge," she scolds.

The ministry went so far as to put out guidance for Tu Bishvat shoppers on how to properly assess the price of their purchases, and the responsibilities businesses have to clearly indicate what's included in the price.

In fact, she says, a consumer protection law holds sellers who mislead customers about their prices by putting packaging on the scale alongside fruit (among other scams) are liable for a fine of NIS 204,400 per violation.



The ministry did not specify how much consumers overspend on Styrofoam trays or plastic bags. Some simple math, however, shows that just the money from 978 fines against businesses could pay for the whole country's Tu Bishvat fruit consumption.

Related Content

The Teva Pharmaceutical Industries
April 30, 2015
Teva doubles down on Mylan, despite rejection

By GLOBES, NIV ELIS