search

Unilever chief says company ‘fully committed’ to Israel

In this March 15, 2018, photo, the logo for Unilever appears above a trading post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, file)
In this March 15, 2018, photo, the logo for Unilever appears above a trading post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, file)

The chief executive of Unilever says the global consumer goods giant remains “fully committed” to doing business in Israel, distancing himself from this week’s announcement by the company’s Ben & Jerry’s ice cream brand that it will stop serving Israel’s West Bank settlements.

But CEO Alan Jope gives no indication that Unilever would force Ben & Jerry’s to roll back its controversial decision. In a conference call with investors, Jope says Ben & Jerry’s, which has a long history of social activism, had made the decision on its own.

He notes that under its purchase agreement with Ben & Jerry’s in 2000, the company maintained broad independence over its social justice policies and that Unilever respected that arrangement.

“Obviously it’s a complex and sensitive matter that elicits very strong feelings,” he says. “If there is one message I want to underscore in this call, it’s that Unilever remains fully committed to our business in Israel.”

comments
Never miss breaking news on Israel
Get notifications to stay updated
You're subscribed