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Jan 22, 2008

Tu B'Shvat irony

Today is Tu B'Shvat, the day celebrating the New Year for the trees, and the day celebrating the fruits of Eretz Yisrael with the custom of eating fruits of Eretz Yisrael.

I find it ironic that much of the fruit being bought in the market to be eaten on Tu B'Shvat, as Tu B'Shvat fruit, much of it being dried fruit, is imported from Turkey or Italy. Look on the package that you brought home from the supermarket. See if the fruit comes from Eretz Yisrael or not.

There is nothing wrong with it, and you should all enjoy your fruit. I just find it ironic that we celebrate fruit of the Land of Israel by importing much of the fruit from foreign lands.

Now back to our regular programming....


  1. That's why I bought a tray of dried fruit from Otzah HaAretz.


  2. Two thoughts:

    1. What of the 7 minim are ripe this time of year here?

    2. Much of the best quality Israeli produce is exported.

  3. A bigger irony, in my opinion, is that everyone rushes to plant trees on Tu B'Shvat (well, not this year). However, there is an advantage in terms of orlah (too complicated to explain in brief) for planting fruit trees before Tu B'Shvat. Basically, by waiting until Tu B'Shvat to plant, you "lose" some time to orlah that you wouldn't have lost if you planted the day before.

  4. I read somwhere (but where?!?) that there is a real reason for dried fruit on T"U Bishavt. If you look at photos of the rebbes (like in the centrefold of HaModia..) you'll see platters of dried fruit and lots of clementinas!

  5. I rae somewhere that the way the minhag developed to eat dried fruit came originally from a very practical reason. in order to export and ship the fruit to different places, they had to dry them out otherwise they would spoil.

    It eventually just became a minhag - I guess everyonje forgot that they were only drying out the fruit for practical reasons.

    Now when we can ship fruit quickly and still have it fresh rather than dried, we still do it dried because it is already a minhag.

    That is what I read, but I do not know if there is truth to it or not

  6. The 'fruit from Turkey' is not a new problem. Rav Chaim Brovender spoke here last night, and said that Rav Tzadok addresses the issue in Pri Tzadik...


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