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Popular Israeli coffee ditches the Turks

Consumers asked why the product should be named for the hostile country.

"We Have No Other Country," the Strauss Group coffee packet reads. Credit: Courtesy.
"We Have No Other Country," the Strauss Group coffee packet reads. Credit: Courtesy.

Farewell, Turkish coffee.

A leading Israeli food and beverage company is temporarily removing the words “Turkish Coffee” from the packaging of its popular ground coffee.

The decision by the Strauss Group to break with its 60-year branding tradition follows a social-media uproar over why the coffee should be named for the country led by Recep Tayyip Erdoğan who has openly supported Hamas and widely condemned Israel despite the Oct. 7 massacre.

The words will be replaced with special editions for the war with patriotic slogans in Hebrew such as: “Am Israel Chai” (“The people of Israel lives”), “Generation of Victory,” “We Have No Other Country” and “Strong Together.”

“Turkish Coffee is part of many very Israeli moments. It is much more than just a cup of coffee; it is our unity and our love for the land,” said Ofri Shabo, vice president of marketing at Strauss Coffee Israel. “To strengthen our soldiers, we decided to update the packaging during the war and to put out a line of mottos with messages of unity, hope and belief in the justness of our path.”

Last month, Erdoğan told his country’s parliament that Israel would soon be destroyed.

“Hey Israel: You have an atomic bomb, a nuclear bomb. And you are making threats with this. We know this. And your end is near,” he said. “You can have as many nuclear bombs as you want, but you’re on your way out.”

In his latest tirade, the Turkish leader said Wednesday that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is “no different than Hitler.”

Meanwhile, an anchor on a pro-Erdoğan Turkish television station was fired on Sunday after she appeared on the news with a Starbucks coffee cup. Turkish viewers were apparently infuriated by what they construed as the anchorwoman’s endorsement of the coffee conglomerate, which some in the Muslim world perceive as pro-Israel.

The TGRT network said that the anchorwoman, Meltem Günay, and the news segment’s director were both dismissed because of the “inappropriate” product placement on the anchor table.

 In a statement, the network said that it is “aware of the sensitivities of the Turkish people regarding Gaza and defends them till the end,” adding that it would never approve a broadcast to the contrary.

Starbucks has faced threats of boycotts in the Muslim world for its perceived support of Israel in the war against the Hamas terrorist organization.

Although the company does not operate in Israel, its upper management has earned a pro-Israel image by pushing back against an anti-Israel statement made by one of its workers’ unions shortly after the war began.

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