At One Degree Organic Foods, we believe transparency is extremely important. It’s why we personally visit every farmer of every ingredient that goes into our products. We also make it easy for our customers to meet the farmers, so they can see exactly how the ingredient is grown and harvested and feel good about what they are eating.
The pure organic date syrup that we use to naturally sweeten our products, like our Pumpkin Seed & Flax Granola, comes all the way from Tunisia in North Africa. On our visit to this sundrenched country, we met farmers who work with Boudjebel SA VACPA, whose commitment to quality, organic cultivation and complete transparency matches our own.
Founded in 1982 by the Boudjebel family, the company is now the world leader in the export of Deglet Noor dates and works closely with over 300 organic farmers. They treat the farmers with fairness and respect, giving them the know-how and support to grow organically, which in turn improves lives and the community as a whole. These good agricultural practices have earned the company Organic, Fair Trade, and Global G.A.P. certification.
Of all the date varieties that exist, you may wonder why we sought out pure organic date syrup derived solely from the Deglet Noor date. Quite simply, it is the “queen of dates” – it has less sugar but offers a complex sweetness with a nutty finish.
What makes these dates so naturally sweet is sunshine. Tunisia’s climate, with its high temperatures, low rainfall and abundance of sunshine, is perfect. The growing season takes about six months. During that time the palm trees are watered once a week from very deep wells. Branches and leaves are used for fertilization, and net bags are used to protect the branches of dates from insects.
Come harvest time everything is done the traditional way, by hand. Farmers climb the tree, cut the branches, bring them down, hang them on boxes and then sort and cut them. It’s very labor intensive and impressive to watch.
In the video, you’ll meet Tawfik, one of Boudjebel’s organic farmers. Date farming is part of his heritage. He was just 12 years old when he started scaling the tall palm trees as he worked alongside his father. Today he has 300 hectares of date farms and 90% of his harvest is sold to Boudjebel.
Keep in mind, adding dates – or date syrup – to your diet is a good thing. Unlike highly refined sugars, dates are naturally sweet and packed with nutrients, fiber and antioxidants, all of which provide health benefits ranging from improved digestion to a reduced risk of disease. Dates also have a low glycemic index, which can be a stabilizing factor in blood sugar and help with diabetes management.
One Degree Organics is proud to source clean, healthy, top quality ingredients from around the world to enhance the taste and nutritional value of our products. Organic Deglet Noor date syrup from Boudjebel in Tunisia definitely meets our high standards. We hope you approve.