Egypt Bans Lulav Exports, Shortage Possible


lulavimSukkos is still three and a half months away, but Egypt has announced that it will not export lulavim this year. The announcement has led to fears of a possible shortage, but some – especially Israeli growers – look at it as a possible benefit for those who produce lulavim in Eretz Yisroel. According to estimates, 400,000 of the 500,000 lulavim sold each year in Eretz Yisroel originate from Egypt.

The decision by Egypt was made by the country’s Egyptian Agriculture Minister Amin Abdeh, who claims that the reason for halting the lulav exports is in order to protect Egypt’s 12 million palm trees, 500,000 of which are in northern Sinai, Abdeh said that those who wish to make money before Sukkos often cut the lulavim in an unsupervised manner and render harm to the trees that cannot be rectified later.

Egypt also exports 500,000 lulavim to the United States, 370,000 to France, and others to England, Belgium, Canada, Latin America and other countries.

Egypt has historically been a strong source of lulavim.

As mentioned, Israeli growers may benefit from the news. According to Arutz Shevah, Kibbutz Tirat Tzvi, in the northern Jordan Valley, which sold close to 80,000 high-quality lulavim last year, could easily have sold another 30,000 had it not been for Egypt’s flooding of the market, and even if Tirat Tzvi sells 110,000 this year, it will not be enough. But Moshe Zakkai of Tirat Tzvi told Arutz Shevah that “if given enough advance notice,” [they can] “harvest some 150,000 lulavim, and the other kibbutzim in the area can supply another 300,000. That should not be a problem. We just have to know in advance whether Egypt is serious, or if this is just a ploy to raise prices.”

He said that his kibbutz has roughly 12,000 trees, but the number of lulavim harvested from each tree ranges in number from four to 15 a year, depending on various factors.

Tirat’s Tzvi lulavim are of the coveted Deri variety, and are generally closed on top – a big hiddur – and are stronger, so they are a bit more pricey.

 {Yair Israel}


  1. This is all one big hoax! Every year we hear this same garbage! I’m sure all the gullible peole will be maskim to get ripped off again & again & again!!! Such idiots!

  2. They do this every year, recently (last year?) they arrested someone because they are making a cartel. They report all this to drive up the prices and then somehow they manage to get out a shipment right before Succos.

  3. So, Nisht Geferlech, it will be like when we were growing up: The Bais Hamedrish bought 2-3 Lulovim and we benched when we came to shul.

  4. The arba minim cost price, in total is about $7.64. The average price for a set is $75.00. Genaiva, genaiva, genaiva! Anyone that buys them for going rate, is oiver Lefnai eever. These thugs don’t need reasons to jack up the price even more. SHAME on all Esrog dealers!

  5. it is not genaivah for someone to charge what he wants for an object that belongs tom him, though it may not be nice. but think of the other side, many of them have no income beside for this, they must fly wherever it is and pick up esrogim from the harvester, than lose a lot to shipping, they must be cautious with the beautiful ones etc., if you want you can buy 30$ sets but if you want something that work was put into, pay up buddy.

  6. Where does Mr. Choshen Mishpat get that ridiculous number? I betcha he figures an esrog is like a lemon, and that costs 69 cents a pound. Does he have any idea the effort and expense it takes to ensure that the esrog is clean? Any nick, spot, bruise, lack of freshness, decreases its value. Remember, it is held by individuals for naanuim, hallel and hoshnos for 6 days, and sometimes by multiple people.

    Maybe he should go to a fruit store and scrutinize the peiros there, looking for pintelach, and chazazis, and chaseiros, and see how acceptable he finds those. And then compare that to the esrogim that don’t have belitos, cuz that’s what the lemons and oranges in the fruit store are. Then imagine trying to find a pri etz hadar that has nice belitos, a gidul looking like a nice migdal, and the skin is clean with the bumps!?!?!

    What does he think it costs to package a lulav so that it ships properly and comes to America as a shaleim. Not niktam or nifrad. And how many come possul? And how many more are passeled by customers looking (with their fingers rather than their eyes) at the tips? The cost of every lulav has to have figured in it the 3 out of 4 that never sell because of the reasons mentioned.

  7. All you galutnikkim should be coming to Eretz Yisroel to live and perform the mitzvos.

    Here I buy a beautiful hadar set each year for only 50 shekels.

  8. And to #8, do you know what Onoah means? It is not about profit margins. It is about charges in relation to fair market value.

  9. Harry, #7, When I was in Eretz Yisroel 20 years ago as a bochur in yeshiva, we were unable to buy a mehudar set for 50 shekel. You can’t obtain a hadar set today at that price either, even with Oitzar Beis Din after Shmittah. You are in Golus as well even in Eretz Yisroel. Perhaps you intended to write chutzniks to belittle your foreign brethren.