Unilever reaches settlement with Ben & Jerry’s over ice cream sales in Israel

UK-based food producer Unilever resolves legal dispute with the independent board of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream, which had challenged deal renewing sales to Judea and Samaria.

By Andrew Bernard, The Algemeiner

The Unilever corporation on Thursday announced that it had resolved its ongoing litigation with the independent board of Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream over the sale of the ice cream’s distribution rights in Israel.

“Unilever is pleased to announce that the litigation with Ben & Jerry’s Independent Board has been resolved,” the company said in a one-sentence statement.

Reached for comment by The Algemeiner, a spokesperson for Unilever said that the terms of the settlement were confidential.

Ben & Jerry’s had been engaged in an unusual court battle with its own parent company, Unilever, since Unilever sold its business interests in Ben & Jerry’s in Israel to their Israeli licensee, businessman Avi Zinger, in June 2022.

In a statement, Zinger welcomed the settlement.

“I am pleased that the litigation between Unilever and the independent Board of Ben & Jerry’s has been resolved,” Zinger said. “There is no change to the agreement I made with Unilever earlier in the year. I look forward to continuing to produce and sell the great tasting Ben & Jerry’s ice cream under the Hebrew and Arabic trademarks throughout Israel and the West Bank long into the future.”

Read  Ben & Jerry’s quit Twitter ads over Elon Musk's 'dangerous anti-Democratic lies'

The sale to Zinger was prompted by Ben & Jerry’s decision to halt ice cream sales in Judea and SAmaria, which the company calls “Occupied Palestinian Territory,” claiming that such sales are inconsistent with its values.

A federal judge rejected Ben & Jerry’s suit in August, but the company had been in the process of amending the suit prior to Thursday’s announcement that the matter has been resolved.