torsdag 5 mars 2015

Open letter from the Ambassador of Israel to Oatly AB

Open letter from the Ambassador of Israel to Oatly AB

On the part of the Embassy, through phone calls and emails, we have now been trying over several days to reach the company Oatly, which has chosen to boycott its Israeli supplier following political pressures by anti-Israeli activists. We are surprised by the nonchalance shown by the company in the face of the repeated contact attempts by a foreign mission and its ambassador.

To ignore the opportunity for contacts on this issue is hardly something which does honour to the company.

We do appreciate the apology offered by the company but as long as the decision – which has now been recognized as made on wrongful grounds – is not reversed, the apology remains mere empty words.

If one has now decided to be correct and to show caution, these are principles which primarily should, of course be applied to the present case in question. It has been made abundantly clear that this has nothing to do neither with the price of the product, nor its quality – both of which have been highly satisfactory – but what we see now is solely the result of irrelevant pressures from anti-Israeli activist circles. When one gives in to these types of pressures, it is difficult to see the decision as anything but politically motivated.

The issue is also not about listening to the consumers. The activists do not care about the product, only their own political objectives. The boycott of vitamins from Israel is more important than for instance the many lactose-intolerant children who use the products.
The company Oatly has admitted that is has taken a decision on wrongful grounds. Not to correct this would mean giving in to from anti-Israel activists while ignoring the dissatisfaction of other customers.

If the company thus – in defiance of all logic and its own declared principles – will not revoke a decision admitted to be the wrong one, at least I for my part will not feel any thirst for Oatly products.

It is a dangerous road to take to let market considerations on issues of quality and production be affected by aggressive pressures from extreme and vocal lobby groups and something which is highly detrimental, both to the consumers and the companies.
The negative, and special treatment for which Israel but no other international cooperation partners, is singled out is something, which of course, raises very serious questions about the true motivations behind the actions of Oatly.

Isaac Bachman
Ambassador of Israel

[Starka reaktioner på TV4:s beslut att ta bort Israel-avsnitt]

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