SodaStream Bows to Pressure: Label Change to 'Made in West Bank'

After activists file complaint with Justice Department accusing misrepresentation, SodaStream abandons 'Made in Israel' label.

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Cynthia Blank,

Workers at SodaStream plant
Workers at SodaStream plant
Flash 90

Bowing to complaints from human rights activists in the United States, SodaStream has changed its product labeling from "Made in Israel" to "Made in the West Bank," Haaretz reported. 

SodaStream, an Israeli company which manufactures home carbonation systems, works out of a facility in Mishor Adumim, the industrial zone of Ma'ale Adumim, a Jerusalem suburb located over 1949 Armistice lines. 

Despite employing Israelis and Palestinians on equal salary, because of the facility's location, SodaStream has become a popular target of the global anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

Humans rights activists in Oregon brought a complaint before the Department of Justice in May of 2014 accusing SodaStream of violating the state's Fair Trade Practices Act by labeling products as "Made in Israel."

The act is a consumer protection law which delineates false advertising and misrepresentation as illegal. 

The activists also turned to the US Customs & Borders Control Agency, filing a complaint in November 2014 asserting that the "false" labeling violates US Customs Regulations. An investigation is pending. 

After receiving the complaint, SodaStream announced it would immediately change labels to "Made in the West Bank." The new labels have begun appearing on the company's products in Oregon stores. 

“This appears to be the first time that an Israeli settlement manufacturer has corrected its labels for products sold in the United States,” activist Rod Such of the PDX Boycott Occupation Soda! Coalition said. 

"Many people of conscience refuse to purchase products made in Israel's illegal settlements on occupied Palestinian land in the West Bank, but in the case of SodaStream they were deceived by false labeling that claimed the products were produced within Israel’s internationally recognized borders.”

Last October, SodaStream announced it was shutting down the Mishor Adumim plant sometime in 2015, in favor of a facility in the Negev.