Calling out the controversial ice-cream maker for its double standards on “occupied territory”, a group of Israeli students accused the company of occupying Vermont land that once belonged to a native American tribe.
A group of 1,000 students and academics signed on the Students for Justice in America letter which took aim squarely at Ben & Jerry’s July 2021 decision to discontinue sales in what it called “Occupied Palestinian Territory.”
Referencing Ben & Jerry’s insistence that selling its products in the West Bank was inconsistent with company values, the letter called on the ice cream maker to leave its Waterbury, Vermont facility, saying that it was located on land that had been taken from its tribal owners.
The letter also noted that Ben & Jerry’s has never offered to compensate the Abenaki tribe, which it described as an “indigenous nation,” for the use of its land.
Addressed to the company’s chairperson, the letter read, “We have concluded that your company’s occupation of the Abenaki lands is illegal and we believe it is wholly inconsistent with the stated values that Ben & Jerry’s purports to maintain.”
“Justice, morality and boycotts are not just slogans and antisemitic weapons for your food company to point at the Jewish community in Israel,” read the letter. “Justice and morality must begin at home.”