A Canadian court on Monday ruled that it was “false, misleading and deceptive” to label wines made in Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank as a “Product of Israel.”
Canada’s Federal Court had been asked to rule in the case of David Kattenburg, the child of Holocaust survivors who disagreed with a decision by the Canadian government’s Food Inspection Agency to allow the labels.
Canada’s Federal Court rules that “Product of Israel” labels on West Bank settlement wines are “false, misleading and deceptive.”
Justin Trudeau’s government should accept the Court’s well-reasoned decision and not waste more taxpayer dollars appealing.https://t.co/8ZdfMPHB9g
— BDS movement (@BDSmovement) July 30, 2019
Kattenburg, who criticized Israel’s policies towards the Palestinians, argued that such labeling “facilitates Israel’s de facto annexation of large portions of the West Bank,” according to the court ruling.
The CFIA had defended its usage for the wines made in the West Bank settlements by citing the free trade agreement between Canada and Israel.
That move was backed by Canada’s attorney general, who said it was reasonable to refer back to the free trade agreement, given that the Palestinian territory is “not part of a recognized country,” and such a label would meet Canadian requirements.
No ´Made in #Israel´ label for settlement wines: Canada court
— The News (@thenews_intl) July 30, 2019
But Judge Anne Mactavish said because “there is no dispute that the settlements in which the wines are produced are not part of the territory of the State of Israel,” she was finding for Kattenburg.
“Identifying the wines as ‘Products of Israel’ is false, misleading and deceptive and interferes with the ability of Canadian consumers to make informed and rational decisions to buy conscientiously.”
“Individuals opposed to the creation of Israeli settlements in the West Bank need accurate information as to the origins of a product to be able to express their opposition.”
Settlement wines not “Made in Israel,” Canadian court rules https://t.co/ygRejhS4DV
— Electronic Intifada (@intifada) July 30, 2019
“Incorrectly identifying the wines as ‘Products of Israel’ inhibits the ability of consumers to express their political views through their purchasing choices” and limits their freedom of expression, she said.
Mactavish said the CFIA will have to determine how to label the wines.
In 2015, the European Union approved guidelines for member states to include the phrase “Israeli settlement” on labels of products from Jewish enclaves in the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and the Golan Heights, all of which were occupied by Israel in the 1967 Six-Day War.
Israel was furious at the move.
(Al-Araby Al-Jadeed, PC, Social Media)