In Gaza, the harvest season of dates starts in late September and lasts until the end of October. The area has about 12,000 dunams (1,200 ha) of agricultural land for palm trees. According to the Agriculture Ministry, about 8,500 dunams are fruitful while the rest are currently unproductive.
That is why Palestinian date farmers in the small coastal region have reported major financial losses in this year's date harvest season. As a significant percentage of trees did not bear fruit, this decreased the number of dates able to enter the local markets.
"This year's harvest of date fruits has witnessed a decline in the production process by 40 per cent compared to previous seasons," said Islam Abu Shuaib, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Civil Society for Palm Development.
A farmer from Biet Hanoun in the north of the coastal enclave, expressed his fears of losing the harvest season and being unable to make some profits. He and a colleague estimated their losses to be at least US$ 10,000. They also blamed Hamas-run local authorities for allowing the traders to import dates from abroad, further weakening the ability to market the local product.
They called on the Hamas-run Agriculture Ministry, the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations "FAO" to support the palm sector and farmers in the strip and protect the upcoming harvest seasons.
Source - https://www.freshplaza.com