Israeli traders will buy between 70,000 and 100,000 lulavs – palm tree fronds that are one of the Four Species of Sukkot – from Jordan. Another initiative – to buy 50,000 lulavs from Gaza traders who smuggled them into Gaza from Sinai – was vetoed by the Hamas terror group that rules over Gaza.
Egypt recently decided not to allow the sale of lulavs grown in Sinai to Israeli traders this year. The decision reflects the hostile posture Egypt has been adopting toward Israel after the downfall of President Hosni Mubarak.
The Agriculture Ministry said in mid-September that it believes that it has managed to avert a shortage in lulavs despite the last-minute announcement by Egypt that it will not allow their export this year. Israeli palm tree growers are expected to be able to produce enough lulavs to meet most of the demand, the Ministry said. It estimated that lulav prices will not spike and that supply will meet demand.