Israeli farmers are destroying their produce en masse and calling on the government to shut down imports in a bid to raise prices.
According to TheMarker, Israeli farmers growing cucumbers, one of the country’s most popular vegetables, began destroying their own produce last Wednesday in an effort to restore prices to the levels reached last fall.
Hezi Daniel, a farmer in Ahituv, a moshav near Netanya, told TheMarker on Friday that the farming community was destroying 60% of its cucumber stock.
Daniel complained of competition from imported cucumbers, including from the Gaza Strip.
“We come to Rami Levy or different institutions, but they tell us that they can buy cucumbers at half our price.”
Israeli farmers, Daniel claimed, had a mutual understanding with the Agricultural Ministry to keep prices within a narrow range. But now the Ministry, he argued, was shirking its duty, letting prices fall too low for domestic producers to bear.
“There’s an understanding between us [farmers] and the foreign trade division of the Agricultural Ministry that when prices rise to 4.5 shekels for a kilo ($0.54 per pound) they open up imports. This has to work the other way as well; when prices fall imports need to be closed off.”