American Quality Products is suing the ice cream giant
AQP claims Ben & Jerry's is breaking Israeli law
Breaking the law?
A long relationship
How and why did Ben & Jerry's decide to stop sales in parts of Israel?
Can an ice cream brand take a political position?
There will be no Ben & Jerry's ice cream in East Jerusalem and the West Bank
Controversial decision
Peace, love & ice cream
Two former hippies turned millionaires
Their first ice cream shop
They have never given up their rebellious spirit
The brand belongs to the multinational Unilever
Worrisome precedent for the Israeli government
Other companies are reluctant to open in Israeli-controlled Palestinian areas
Ben & Jerry's still sold outside of Gaza and East Jerusalem
Spiritual and non-economic management
Progressive icon
A symbol of American freedom of opinion
Ice cream and the Israel-Palestine conflict
May the peace come and the ice cream return
Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(1/23)
American Quality Products is suing the ice cream giant

The Israeli distributor of Ben & Jerry's ice cream, American Quality Products, announced on May 12 that it is suing the ice cream company along with its parent company Unilever over the decision to stop selling ice cream in Israel.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(2/23)
AQP claims Ben & Jerry's is breaking Israeli law

American Quality Products (AQP) released a statement about Ben & Jerry's "unlawfully terminating its 34-year business relationship in order to boycott Israel." AQP hopes that a US federal court will deem the termination illegal and thus allow the company to continue to sell the popular ice cream brand Israel.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(3/23)
Breaking the law?

The lawsuit filed in New Jersey by AQP claims that Unilever, who owns Ben & Jerry's, is breaking Israeli law by allowing American Quality Products to only sell the ice cream in certain parts of Israel.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(4/23)
"Boycotting Israel should come with a heavy price tag"

In a press release Avi Zinger, the owner of AQP, said, "Ben & Jerry's and Unilever's actions are misguided, unlawful, and immoral. Boycotting Israel should come with a heavy price tag, and therefore, we are taking Unilever to court."

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(5/23)
"Leave ice cream out of the political debate"

Zinger (pictured) continued, "There is still time to do the right thing. Renew my license and leave ice cream out of the political debate."

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(6/23)
A long relationship

Ben & Jerry's began its business relationship with Israel in 1987. However as tensions in the region have increased, the company found itself under scrutiny for conducting business in Israel.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(7/23)
How and why did Ben & Jerry's decide to stop sales in parts of Israel?

CNN Business reported that Ben & Jerry's declined to comment on the lawsuit and that Unilever had not yet responded to a comment request. Click on to read more about how and why Ben & Jerry's decided to pull sales in Israel.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(8/23)
Can an ice cream brand take a political position?

Ben & Jerry's is clearly not your average ice cream brand. Its founders (Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield) have given their company a very powerful ideological stamp that comes from their hippie origins. Ben & Jerry's is involved in progressive causes and has now made a controversial decision.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(9/23)
There will be no Ben & Jerry's ice cream in East Jerusalem and the West Bank

Last year Ben & Jerry's announced that it would stop distributing its products in the “occupied Palestinian territories,” which they announced on their social media accounts. It thus joins the BDS (Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions) campaign, in which pro-Palestinian groups promote the boycott of Israel by companies, artists, and institutions.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(10/23)
Controversial decision

The Israeli government was quick to label Ben & Jerry's decision "immoral and discriminatory." This is a recurring debate: is it legitimate to punish the Israeli population (in this case without ice cream) over their government's treatment of the Palestinian people?

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(11/23)
Peace, love & ice cream

But Ben &Jerry's is not a neutral ice cream brand. The company's motto is 'Peace, Love & Ice Cream,' an obvious tribute to the fabulous 60s, a revolutionary moment to which its founders feel very attached.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(12/23)
Two former hippies turned millionaires

Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield lived through the 60s intensely. They were hippies, and, as early as 1977, they took a correspondence course to learn how to make ice cream.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(13/23)
Their first ice cream shop

They started with a store in Burlington (in Vermont) located above a gas station. But they quickly achieved success and expanded the number of stores. They instituted the celebrated 'Free Ice Cream Day' in honour of their company's anniversary.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(14/23)
They have never given up their rebellious spirit

Ben & Jerry's has been involved in numerous campaigns as a brand: in favour of the environment, against racism, in defence of LGBTQ + rights… They honoured Obama with the ice cream called 'Yes. Pecan '. Their ideological position is clear.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(15/23)
The brand belongs to the multinational Unilever

Ben & Jerry's was sold to the multinational Unilever (owner of Nestlé, Kraft Foods, etc.) But Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield retain the management of the brand when it comes to philosophy. And that is why the decision not to sell their products in East Jerusalem and the West Bank has not required the approval of the multinational.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(16/23)
Worrisome precedent for the Israeli government

Ben & Jerry's decision seriously worries the Israeli government because it is a triumph of the BDS (Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions) campaign. It is alarming that a large brand is joining a movement that, until now, had only attracted militant artists and small firms.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(17/23)
Other companies are reluctant to open in Israeli-controlled Palestinian areas

Israel already faces a problem, with companies feeling reluctant about opening establishments in what is called the "occupied territories" by Israel in Palestine.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(18/23)
Ben & Jerry's still sold outside of Gaza and East Jerusalem

Ben & Jerry's decision has had a very intense propaganda and image impact. Both founders of the brand know this, and they don't want to give up the entire Israeli market either. Their ice cream will continue to be sold outside of Gaza and East Jerusalem.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(19/23)
Spiritual and non-economic management

In any case, the curious thing about Ben & Jerry's sale agreement with the giant Unilever is that Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield are not included in the economic management of the brand but maintain control over the philosophy, image, and policies of their creation. Pictured: Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield supporting Bernie Sanders.)

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(20/23)
Progressive icon

And, thus, Ben & Jerry's (beyond the excellence of its ice creams) continues to represent an icon of progressive culture in the United States and the world. In this case, to the chagrin of pro-Israel public opinion.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(21/23)
A symbol of American freedom of opinion

And, in a way, Ben & Jerry's also represents America's corporate freedom, which includes free speech applied to brands.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(22/23)
Ice cream and the Israel-Palestine conflict

Ice cream has crept into the tragic conflict between Israel and Palestine.

Noticias
Ice Cream and International Politics: AQP sues Ben & Jerry's and Unilever over Israel sales ban
(23/23)
May the peace come and the ice cream return

Be that as it may, we hope that Israel and Palestine find peace one day and we see the return of Ben & Jerry's ice cream to all territories.

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