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Ben & Jerry’s To Boycott “Occupied Palestinian Territory” Including Ancient Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem

Ben & Jerry’s To Boycott “Occupied Palestinian Territory” Including Ancient Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett stated, “There are many ice cream brands, but only one Jewish state.”

Ben & Jerry’s ice cream showed its true colors once again by announcing a boycott in the “Occupied Palestinian Territory.” The Jerusalem Post noted one can correctly assume the company means the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

The BDS movement loves the decision.

The company wrote:

We believe it is inconsistent with our values for Ben & Jerry’s ice cream to be sold in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT). We also hear and recognize the concerns shared with us by our fans and trusted partners.

We have a longstanding partnership with our licensee, who manufactures Ben & Jerry’s ice cream in Israel and distributes it in the region. We have been working to change this, and so we have informed our licensee that we will not renew the license agreement when it expires at the end of next year.

Ben & Jerry’s “will stay in Israel through a different arrangement.”

Well, only parts of Israel.

The Independent Board of Ben & Jerry’s, their fancy way of saying the board of directors, said selling the ice cream “is inconsistent with our values.”

“We have a longstanding agreement with our licensee, who manufactures Ben & Jerry’s ice cream in Israel and distributes it in the region,” said the board. “The company will not renew the License arrangement when it expires next year.”

They added: “We have always been led by our values and remain committed to being a social justice company.”

Ben & Jerry’s has a long history of far-left politics. I remember when it partnered with rabid anti-Semite Linda Sarsour. It also asked Twitter to provide names for “progressive ice cream.”

Ben & Jerry’s boycott targets Jews living in the Jewish Quarter of the Old City. The company supposes occupied areas are the places Jews reside.

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett stated, “There are many ice cream brands, but only one Jewish state.”

Bennett continued:

“Ben & Jerry’s has decided to brand itself as the anti-Israel ice cream. This decision is morally wrong and I believe that it will become clear that it is also commercially wrong.

“The boycott against Israel – a democracy surrounded by islands of terrorism – reflects a total loss of way. The boycott does not work and will not work, and we will fight it with full force.”

Unilever Israel provided a vague and typical PR statement:

“We are aware that Ben & Jerry’s has recently made an announcement. To be clear, Unilever Israel does not manage Ben & Jerry’s locally. The brand is run by a competitor’s business which owns the Ben & Jerry’s franchise in the Israeli market. Unilever Israel had no involvement in this decision. It was made by Ben & Jerry’s globally and its independent Board of Directors. We are very proud of our history in Israel and are fully committed to our long-term presence. We employ around 2,000 employees, the majority of which in our factories in Arad, Acre, Safed and Haifa. In the last decade alone, the company has invested in the Israeli market more than 1 billion NIS, and will continue to invest in its people, brands, and business in the local market.”

It looks like Unilever Israel is consistent.


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There is no such thing as “Palestinian Territory”, occupied or otherwise.

I would boycott Ben & Jerry’s in response but I’ve never eaten their stuff. It’s overpriced and their marketing too cutsie. Byrne’s Ice Milk is an excellent alternative.

I believe the part of Israel they are calling Palestine was called Judea until the Romans changed the name of the area from Egypt up to present day Turkey to Palestine.

BTW: I swore off Ben & Jerry’s back in the 90’s when they first went all political.

    fscarn in reply to Tsquared. | July 19, 2021 at 7:01 pm

    Both Ben (b.1951) and Jerry (also b.1951) are full-on lefties. They have always been that way. They formed their company in 1978, and right from its start it was a left-wing company and brought lefty-ism to the selling of ice cream.

    Name the issue and B&J takes the lefty position, whether it’s unilateral disarmament by the USA alone, abortion, open borders, pro-Castro, the environment, tax-the-rich-forever, and on and on. You name it, they’re on the wrong side of every issue.

Dejectedhead | July 19, 2021 at 6:53 pm

I give it within 10 years that Ben and Jerry’s ceases sales of Ice Cream in the United States due to occupation of native lands.

    Ben Kent in reply to Dejectedhead. | July 19, 2021 at 7:10 pm

    2 years

    Milhouse in reply to Dejectedhead. | July 20, 2021 at 3:49 pm

    No, that’s too big a market to give up. Even Israel is too big a market for them to give up; that’s why they only want to give up the relatively small market of the so-called “territories” — but they’re going to find that that’s impossible, because it’s against the law in Israel. Besides, if they were to give up the USA where could they sell their products? What country isn’t somehow “ethically” problematic from their point of view, except Cuba and Venzuela, where people are too poor to afford their products?

Radio Japan new on demand (worth listening once a day for at least a non-US narrative business model) always takes the Palestinian side in any dispute with Israel. Quite a change from Imperial Japan. I think it’s that there were no Palestinians working on the Manhattan Project. I don’t see Ben and Jerry’s interest though.

    JusticeDelivered in reply to rhhardin. | July 20, 2021 at 2:02 am

    There is no doubt in my mind that Japan deserved those 2 nukes, and considering the way they prisoners, they are damn lucky that they did not get additional nukes, we did have production capacity to produce additional nukes at a rater of one every 2 weeks.

I don’t eat Ben and Jerris, o we priced crap

NavyMustang | July 19, 2021 at 7:17 pm

Another reason why I won’t buy their product. Stopped buying it years ago.

I thought Ben & Jerry sold out a long time ago?

    The Friendly Grizzly in reply to alohahola. | July 20, 2021 at 2:43 am

    I thought Pillsbury bought them.

      It did. They’re now owned by Unilever. But the contract provided that the board retains its independence and is allowed to do stupid things like this. Unilever is not happy, but there’s little it can do about it.

henrybowman | July 19, 2021 at 7:58 pm

I don’t buy Ben & Jerry’s, so I don’t know… do they bother to get kosher certification?

An occupation in progress by a PLO et al past, a Fatah et al present, and an em-pathetic community that sabotages “Palestinians” and murders Jews in renewable waves. One step forward, two steps backward.

I was already not buying from them so I have no economic leverage in this case. For your health reasons you shouldn’t have economic leverage over them, and we all knew that Ben and Jerrys is a socialist company that hates us all and thinks we are yazis before this to.

A better question is even before they came out as anti-semites why exactly would you want to buy? They are a socialist company who think you are nazis, their product is extremely unhealthy, and if you aren’t eating their products you won’t know the difference between their ice cream and much healthier alternatives.

Ben and Jerrys along with many others are contributing to a health crisis called obesity why would you want to be part of that?

I don’t like eating lard either, if a lard producer comes out as an anti-semite I won’t be able to boycott because I’m not trying to die as a result of obesity.

    p in reply to Danny. | July 20, 2021 at 8:06 am

    Back in the 90s where was a birth control pill that was pulled off the market because it leached calcium from women’s bones. I have a relative who as a teenager was taking it not for birth control purposes but because it was being used to treat a condition she had. The doctor made her stop taking it after a bone density test showed she had the bones of an elderly woman. What did he tell her to do? Eat as much ice cream as possible. There was a lot of ice cream being consumed, along with other dairy products, for a bunch of months while she rebuilt her bones. And no, he didn’t pack on weight.

Why is this news? Why does anyone care where Ben & Jerrys sells their ice cream? I like ice cream, but I won’t buy their overpriced stuff.

Besides, don’t they care about the slavery of the cows who are oppressed and forcibly milked to make their ice cream? What about all the methane these cows belch that contributes to global warming? What about the ozone-destroying freons that are used in their refrigeration equipment?

As I haven’t ate B & J’s leftist fare for years, I can’t not consume any less. To paraphrase someone: “I wish I could do less!”

Never had their swill, never will.

E Howard Hunt | July 20, 2021 at 12:17 am

Any word where Baskin Robbins stands on this?

HImmanuelson | July 20, 2021 at 2:19 am

I’m fairly sure this is in blatant violation of US law. US companies are not allowed to boycott countries that the US itself isn’t restricting sales to. In some cases there’s enough ambiguity that they can deny that’s why they are no longer doing business in Israel, but these folks publicly proclaimed why.

I wonder how long it’ll take them to be sued and when/if the feds will get involved?

    Milhouse in reply to HImmanuelson. | July 21, 2021 at 12:35 am

    That’s not true. Not only is there no such law, Congress has no power to make one. If a company doesn’t want to sell its products somewhere, Congress can’t force it to.

    But even if there were such a law (which there can’t be), B&J wouldn’t be violating it, since it says it intends to continue selling in Israel in 2023, just not in the so-called “territories”.

Calm down, everyone.

First of all, they didn’t say what they mean by “Occupied Palestinian Territories”, so there’s no point in guessing. Maybe they meant to include the Jewish Quarter of the Old City, maybe they didn’t, but most likely they’re not even aware of the issue and have no idea what they meant. It just sounds good, so they said it, and they’ll leave it to other people, at the end of 2022, to figure it out.

Second, nothing is happening until the end of 2022. B&J will continue to be sold in Judaea, Samaria, Benjamin, Jerusalem, the Golan, and everywhere else in Israel, so long as stores are willing to carry it and people are willing to buy it.

Speaking of which, Israelis who are now threatening to boycott B&J are doing exactly the wrong thing and scoring an own goal. The only one they’re hurting is the local Israeli company that manufactures and distributes B&J under license. A company that not only had no hand in this decision, but is its chief victim.

What B&J’s board has announced is that at the end of 2022 they will not renew that Israeli company’s license, and will instead seek some new licensee who will agree not to distribute the product where they don’t want it distributed. Except that they will never find such a person or company, because what they’re demanding is illegal in Israel. So the only way for them to make good on their threat would be to pull out of the Israeli market entirely, which they don’t want to do, because they can’t afford to give up all that revenue.

Unilever Israel‘s statement is completely unobjectionable. They are not responsible for what B&J does. They have no control over B&J in Israel, and they also have no control over the B&J board in the USA. It’s also unfair to blame them for the actions of their parent company in the 1930s.

As for Unilever International, which owns B&J, it’s not responsible for this either, because B&J’s board is independent. They own the company but they can’t tell the board what to do. That’s the contract under which they bought the company. So they can’t interfere with this decision. However, if the B&J board decides that rather than continue to sell in the “territories” in 2023 they’ll pull out of Israel altogether, I imagine Unilever will have some harsh words for them, and do whatever it can to prevent it. That’s a lot of revenue to give up, and for Unilever that’s the whole point of owning B&J.

Now here’s an idea I’ve had: Some time between now and the end of next year the Knesset should pass legislation to cancel B&J’s Israeli trademark protection if it does not renew the license. Or better still to seize the trademark for the state and renew the license itself, with all the fees going to the state instead of to B&J. That’s more likely than anything to get the license renewed.

    Brave Sir Robbin in reply to Milhouse. | July 20, 2021 at 9:23 am

    ‘However, if the B&J board decides that rather than continue to sell in the “territories” in 2023 they’ll pull out of Israel altogether, I imagine Unilever will have some harsh words for them, and do whatever it can to prevent it.”

    Harsh words rarely have effect on fanatics. Sticks and stones are required.

    “Or better still to seize the trademark for the state and renew the license itself, with all the fees going to the state instead of to B&J.”

    Why wait?

      Unilever doesn’t control B&J. But it owns it, so harsh words are bound to have a serious effect on the board.

      Why wait to seize the trademark? Because they haven’t done anything yet. They can’t do anything until 2023. If and when they do, it would be appropriate to take their trademark away and allow the current licensee to continue manufacturing the ice cream as it’s been doing all along.

    Danny in reply to Milhouse. | July 20, 2021 at 12:30 pm

    The Ice Cream in question is the least healthy ice cream option you have, and they are convinced your an irredeemable racist so I was already not buying their products for two fantastic reasons.

    They are trying to lever international pressure and pressure on other corporations to boycott Israel whatever the practical effect and I suspect because Israelis I have met aren’t land whales that they aren’t generating that much revenue in Israel.

      Milhouse in reply to Danny. | July 20, 2021 at 3:57 pm

      You have it backwards. This announcement is the result of pressure they’ve been under from their fellow leftists who’ve been boycotting them because their brand is sold in the “territories”. So they’re trying to placate those people by saying that until the end of 2022 there’s nothing they can do about it, but in 2023 they’ll stop selling there. It’s all about not being the bad guys to their side; I doubt they even considered that there’s a whole other contingent of customers who would be angered.

        Danny in reply to Milhouse. | July 20, 2021 at 7:05 pm

        A major corporation going for anti-Israel adds pressure to other corporations to join them.

        Politics is mostly optics, and the BDS movement is very deliberately one of optics that by it’s own admission isn’t damaging the Israeli economy and doesn’t expect to. Announcing a boycott over disputed territories claiming instead they are illegally sized means nothing if I do it, a corporation doing it however is a major political win.

        If you are just concerned about practical effects Israel is the size of the smallest American states you can’t practically prevent consumption of one brand in one part of Jerusalem but not another, but this is major politically

          Milhouse in reply to Danny. | July 21, 2021 at 12:45 am

          First of all, B&J is not a major corporation. It’s a very minor one, in fact not even a corporation at all, since it’s just part of Unilever, albeit a part with its own independent board.

          And as I wrote, you have the whole thing backwards; B&J is not leading, it’s following. It didn’t do this to influence anyone else, or it would have done it years ago. It did it because it was under pressure from everyone else who was doing it, and it felt compelled to follow suit.

          And it’s not about who can buy the product but where it can be sold. It doesn’t want the product sold in the “territories”; it has no objection to residents buying it in Israel itself and taking it home. But as I wrote earlier, its plan to find an Israeli company that will agree to sell only inside Israel and not in the “territories” will fail, because that’s illegal under Israeli law.

          (And that’s even not considering the question of Jerusalem, because it didn’t say whether it wants to stop it being sold there. I doubt the B&J board is even aware of the dispute over Jerusalem’s status, let alone that it has an opinion on the matter.)

        Danny in reply to Milhouse. | July 21, 2021 at 2:44 am

        To reply to your reply (there isn’t a reply button there) the company may have been purchased by a higher up but perceptions are important. I have seen the brand on sale in supermarkets practically everywhere in plenty of states (and by coincidence have noticed obesity plenty of times and statistics bears me out that we Americans make very poor health choices when it comes to food and weight)

        but back on topic it may have lost independence but how it is perceived is as a powerful and ethical company and this likely struck people as an ethical business refusing to do business with a human rights abuser. It is hard to imagine the leadership thought that announcing what would be perceived as a boycott wouldn’t come across that way and I don’t think they faced major pressure because twitter isn’t real it is a set of two echo chambers, one a shrinking right wing echo chamber that Jack Dorsey is increasingly banning and the other a larger leftist echo chamber. I think corporations know this but like to use the twitteraty as an excuse to mix their politics with business.

          Milhouse in reply to Danny. | July 21, 2021 at 12:03 pm

          Danny, you’re ignoring the reality, that this decision was caused by the pressure on them, rather than being designed to pressure others. It is being driven, not driving. That is simply the plain and obvious fact as anyone who has followed the story can see. B&J has been the target of enormous criticism and boycotts from the left, i.e. from its own colleagues who ought to support it, because its products are being sold in the “territories”. Its Twitter account was silent for months while it was considering what to do. Your fantasy that it’s the other way around, that this decision was intended to drive others, is just not compatible with the known facts.

          Also you spoke of major corporations’ influence, and B&J, even when it was its own corporation, was an extremely minor one. Now it’s merely a self-governing unit within Unilever (which is not at all impressed by this decision, but can’t stop it).

Ben and Jerry’s refers to the territory that the supremacist, totalitarian, belligerent, hate-filled, genocide-aspiring, Arab Muslim terrorists lost, in multiple wars that they started against Israel.

That’s right — the Arab Muslims lost territory after initiating sneak attacks against Israel, and, now seek as sore losers to get that territory back. Which, to return it, would be quite obviously rewarding Arab Muslims’ belligerence.

The Dhimmi-crats demonstrate their moral bankruptcy and stupefying stupidity, once again. Arab Muslims are not victims; they have made ill-advised decisions, based upon their supremacist, totalitarian and hate-filled ideology, to attack Israel, repeatedly. And, for the record, the Dhimmi-crats should learn some history and acknowledge the fact that Jews were living in the middle east for millennia before the vile ideology of “Submission” was founded; millennia before such a thing as a goose-stepping Muslim supremacist ever existed.

She didn’t pack on weight.

    Brave Sir Robbin in reply to p. | July 20, 2021 at 9:25 am

    “She didn’t pack on weight.”

    He, she, xhe, shx, who can tell these days?

Antifundamentalist | July 20, 2021 at 9:55 am

I stopped buying Ben & Jerry’s icecream well over a decade ago because they put way too much of their corporate donations into Leftist politics. Seems like I made the right choice.

    You mean you started eating healthier instead of giving money to people who hate you? Don’t you realize we conservatives are supposed to be suicidal ideologues who always shout private company good?

Virtue signaling that will not improve the life of one Arab resident of of the land that Britain ceded to TransJordan in 1947 (unless they are overweight or have high cholesterol and need to avoid eating ice cream).

Meanwhile, B&J’s will now become even more popular among the woke leftists, anti-Jewish Europeans and college academia that deny the right of Israel to live within secure borders. They can chow down on this overpriced treat thinking they are doing something good for subjugated freedom-fighters.