(August 10, 2021 / JNS) B’nai Brith Canada is urging Israel supporters to sign an open letter that demands major Canadian grocery chains to stop stocking Ben & Jerry’s products following the ice-cream maker’s decision to boycott the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem. The company is owned by the British behemoth Unilever, though founders Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield, who are Jewish, have a say in social-justices decisions.
In the letter, written in both English and French to local grocery stores, B’nai Brith said that by “unfairly singling out Israel with their boycott,” the company has made their products “unpalatable to many Canadian consumers.”
The letter added: “While Ben & Jerry’s claim that they are simply opposed to certain Israeli government policies, their position is indefensible and their apparent pre-judgements relating to a complex, historical situation should be inconsistent with your company’s values. … Customers like myself will be more than happy to buy other, non-discriminatory, ice-cream brands and Ben & Jerry’s will not be missed at your store. I certainly do not want to see it there.”
B’nai Brith Canada CEO Michael Mostyn in a statement released on Friday that “Canada’s Jewish community stands with Israel. It’s not just the ice-cream lovers who don’t appreciate their summer dessert becoming unfairly politicized.”
He continued, saying “we encourage all consumers of good conscience to vote with their wallets, and let major grocery retailers understand that Ben & Jerry’s is no longer a brand we want to see on Canadian store shelves.”
In January 2019, Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau slammed the BDS movement as anti-Semitic and against “Canadian values.”
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