Jordan Valley rejects Germany's 'Jewish labeling'

Jordan Valley head protests to German Ambassador after marketing chains demand farmers label 'occupation goods.'

Uzi Baruch ,

Israeli flag in Jordan Valley
Israeli flag in Jordan Valley
Flash 90

David Elhayani, head of the Jordan Valley regional council, was dismayed to receive a demand by marketing chains in Germany calling for Jewish products in the Jordan Valley to be marked as "occupation goods."

In one of the phone conversations that representatives of the German Gaia company held with a local farmer, they said their customers in Germany demand prominent labeling reading as follows: "the product was produced in territories occupied by the government of Israel."

Elhayani, himself a farmer, sent his strong protest to the German Ambassador to Israel Clemens von Goetze, and firmly stated that Jordan Valley farmers will not label any of their products.

"The state of Israel in these days is dealing with a wave of violent and severe terror," said Elhayani. "This decision for the harmful demand by the European Union comes on the background of this serious reality - it's simply scandalous."

"We will not label any of our products. In our eyes the demand to label goods is equal to the demand from the dark and awful days of the past when Jews were labeled in Europe," he added, in reference to the genocidal Holocaust committed by the German Nazis.

Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel made a similar reference on Friday, when he said unfortunately Germany in the past also labeled Jews, and the European Union (EU) must renounced the "wretched boycott decision."

Ariel added that his ministry intends to aid farmers in the Jordan Valley.

The EU last November decided to label all Jewish products from Judea, Samaria and the Golan Heights. The double-standard of the move was put on display a month later, as a top European court struck down a trade deal with Morocco in the occupied Western Sahara, and the EU responded by petitioning the ruling.

Legal experts revealed the ruling undermines the EU's claims that its labeling of Israel and taking other punitive actions are due to a principle of "non-recognition," since the court decision shows that it can and does do business with "occupiers."

Then in January the EU decided that its agreements with Israel no longer apply over the 1949 Armistice lines, a move the US backed.

The US in January "reissued" its orders to importers calling to label goods from Judea and Samaria as not being from Israel. Legal experts have revealed the move is in fact a deceptive policy change, as the original 1995 guidelines only called to label Palestinian Authority (PA) goods as not Israeli, whereas the new order calls to label the goods of Israeli Jews in the region as not being Israeli as well.