A Canadian Federal Court ruled that labelling a wine from the West Bank as a ‘Product of Israel’ is misleading and deceptive.
The decision is the latest move in a three-year dispute over whether bottles from the Psagot Winery and Shiloh Winery in the occupied West Bank can be claimed as originally from Israel.
The court suggested that because wines were not labelled as produced in the West Bank, consumers were not able to make informed decisions if they wanted to buy conscientiously.
The ruling means that the Canada Food Inspection Agency must now decide how the wines should be labelled.
Judge Anne Mactavish expressed in her judicial decision that “one peaceful way in which people can express their political views is through their purchasing decisions. To be able to express their views in this manner, however, consumers have to be provided with accurate information as to the source of the products in question.
In conversation with CBC News, the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that the decision “encourages and lends support to boycotts and the BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions) movement. Israel objects to this. They also asserted that this was discriminatory treatment.
CBC News reported that David Kattenburg, who filed the case in court, stated that you can’t label the products (as) ‘Product of Israel’ if they weren’t produced in Israel. End of story.
In an opinion piece for the Middle East Eye, Professor at University of Birmingham Kamel Hawwash stated the court ruling is significant because it upholds international law on the illegal occupation of Palestine.
Hawwash concluded that while Palestinians would welcome ‘one giant leap for mankind’ in support of their quest for freedom, justice and equality, cumulative smaller steps serve to remind Israel and its US backers that rights and international law are vital.
Source: Palestine Monitor