Ben and Jerry in the bad books

July 21, 2021 by J-Wire Newsdesk
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Although Ben and Jerry’s ice cream products in Australia carry a hechsher certifying that is Kosher, main Kashrut bodies in Australia have decided to remove the product from their marketing catalogues.

Ben & Jerry’s products on the shelf of a grocery store. Credit: Arne Beruldsen/Shutterstock.

Rabbi Aaron Groner at Sydney’s K-A [Kosher Authority] told J-Wire: “We are not saying it’s not kosher, we are just not promoting the company.”

In Melbourne, Kosher Australia’s Yankel Waisjbort added: “We have taken off our kosher guide as well even though it carries a hechsher from the United States where it is manufactured.”

The two authorities have joined a worldwide reaction to the decision taken by Ben and Jerry’s to stop supplying its products in Judea and Samaria at the end of next year.

The company was founded in Vermont by Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield but it is now owned and operated by the giant Unilever corporation.

As reported in J-Wire yesterday,  The Kosher Kingdom Market in Melbourne is discounting Ben and Jerry’s products for a quick cleanout of its stock and will not buy any further supplies.

In the meantime, co-CEO of The Executive Council Of Australian Jewry Alex Ryvchin said: “This boycott is performative activism intended to make the decision-makers at Ben & Jerry’s feel virtuous and aligned to fashionable progressive causes.

Ceasing to sell ice cream to Jews who live on the wrong side of a defunct armistice line will have zero practical consequence. It will cause no policy change or aid the resumption of negotiations. It will merely contribute to a dangerous view that Jews living in east Jerusalem and the West Bank constitute some grave danger to world peace and their isolation and removal is a burning priority that outranks scores of territorial disputes and nationalist conflicts.

This is a sentiment that has seen Jews around the world violently attacked. Ben & Jerry’s should feel ashamed of their contribution to deepening hatred and hostility. They are now being inundated with calls to withdraw from Israel entirely, a lesson that extremists and bigots are never satisfied.”


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