ZiBA FAQs

Why Afghanistan?

In the 1970s, Afghanistan was a leading producer of high-quality heirloom dried fruits and nuts for international markets. Unfortunately, due to the war and the unstable economic climate, the country’s farms were unable to acquire the modern technology needed to keep up with the global demand. ZiBA’s mission is to help revitalize Afghanistan’s renowned superior quality dried fruit and nut industry.


How does ZiBA empower its female employees?

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One of ZiBA’s core missions as a business is to empower the Afghan people, with a specific focus on helping Afghan women. In a country with limited access to education and extremely high unemployment rates, women rarely get the opportunity to go to school and attain the skills necessary to support themselves and their families. ZiBA’s workforce at its Kabul facility is predominantly female. ZiBA employees not only receive full-time employment and earn above a living wage, but they also have access to English lessons and are taught the skills necessary to work with the modern machinery in the factory. With their full-time employment and ability to support themselves and their children, several female ZiBA employees have been able to improve their lives and escape difficult living conditions.


Are ZiBA dried fruits and nuts organic?

Unfortunately, due to Afghanistan’s limited farming resources and political climate, the organic certification process is extremely difficult to implement. Most Afghan farmers do not have the capital to invest in sprays, synthetic fertilizers, and chemicals to maximize their yield. Therefore, while we cannot say ZiBA nuts and dried fruit are certified organic, the methods and farming practices used technically are. For example, our white mulberries grow wild in the Hindu Kush mountains


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Is it safe to eat ZiBA’s roasted apricot kernels?

 

ZiBA’s apricot kernels are definitely not poisonous; in fact, they are considered a superfood. Unlike most apricot kernels around the world, Afghan varieties naturally contain very low levels of amygdalin / cyanide (B17). ZiBA Bamyan Roasted & Salted Baby Apricot Kernels contain the same minimal levels of Amygdalin found in almonds.


What do we mean when we say ZiBA is sustainable?

The process of cultivating fruits and nuts require an enormous amount of water—unlike drought-ridden California, Afghanistan’s climate and plentiful water supply make the country’s land optimal for the sustainable growth of fruits and nuts.


When is Afghanistan’s harvesting season for nuts?

Afghanistan’s fruit and nut trees blossom each spring. The fruits and nuts then grow through the hot summer months and are harvested in the fall between the months of late August and October.


What's the shelf-life of ZiBA products?

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ZiBA fruits and dried nuts have a 12-month shelf life. For best quality and flavor, we suggest that you consume nuts within 30 days of opening the package.


Are ZiBA products vegan?

All ZiBA products are vegan with the exception with of the Kandahar figs. In order for figs to be edible, wasps must pollinate the flowers. During the pollination process, the wasps often get stuck inside the fruit, ultimately making these deliciously sweet delicacies non-vegan.


Are ZiBA dried fruits and nuts non-GMO?

ZiBA dried fruits and nuts are ancient heirloom varieties and have not been genetically modified.


Are any of the ZiBA dried fruits and nut products nut-free?

While our dried fruit products and roasted apricot kernels are technically nut-free, ZiBA’s Kabul facility where we sort and package the nuts is not. In the future, we hope to offer certified tree nut-free products.

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