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The board of Ben and Jerry’s brand ice cream had decided not to renew a license with American Quality Products (AQP), which sells the product in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, when it expires at the end of 2022.
But the ice cream’s parent company, Unilever, reported it has sold the Israeli arm of the company to Avi Zinger, who owns AQP.
So the boycott of those parts of Israel is essentially gone and the product will once again reach consumers in that part of the country.
The Guardian reported on the distribution of the product, which does not use the Ben and Jerry’s name:
Under the terms of the deal, ice-cream with the same flavors and similar artwork will continue to be sold across Israel but using only the Hebrew and Arabic version of the brand names – not the English brand, Ben & Jerry’s. A Unilever spokesperson said the company would not receive any licensing income from the sale of the products.
Ben & Jerry’s supports the Palestinian Authority and Hamas.
“While our parent company has taken this decision, we do not agree with it. We continue to believe it is inconsistent with Ben & Jerry’s values for our ice-cream to be sold in the Occupied Palestinian Territory,” Ben & Jerry’s said in a statement published by the Guardian.
The Guardian report continued:
The West Bank and East Jerusalem were captured by Israel in the 1967 six-day war. Now 700,000 Israeli settlers live in the two territories – roughly 500,000 in the occupied West Bank and 200,000 in East Jerusalem. Israel treats the two areas separately, considering occupied East Jerusalem as part of its capital and the West Bank as disputed territory whose fate should be resolved in negotiations.
Unilever reportedly said the corporation had decided to make the deal with AQP following “extensive consultation over several months, including with the Israeli government.”
Unilever said it does not support the boycott, divestment, sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel.
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