Delta Air Lines, one of the world’s largest carriers, will stop serving snacks manufactured in an illegal Israeli settlement in the occupied West Bank on its flights from Tel Aviv.
Who Profits, a research project of the Tel Aviv-based Coalition of Women for Peace, learned that Delta Air Lines will stop serving the Ahva Vanilla Halva bar, three weeks after a customer filed a complaint with the company’s legal department.
In the copy of Delta’s email to the customer that I received from Who Profits, Delta Air Lines writes:
From: Delta Customer Care <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, Jul 25, 2013 at 8:00 PM
Subject: Delta Air Lines (KMM25201657V70362L0KM)
RE: Case Number # [redacted]
Dear Ms. [redacted]
We are in receipt of your letter to the Delta Law Department dated July 2, 2013 and the subsequent communication sent on July 25, 2013. We apologize for the delay in our response.
Delta has notified our local catering company to discontinue serving the Vanilla Halva bar in meals onboard Delta flights from Israel.
Please let us know if you have any additional questions or concerns.
Specialist, Corporate Customer Care
Delta Air Lines
WhoProfits (whoprofits.org) did not release the name of the customer, at the customer’s request.
Illegal settlement business
The Ahva Vanilla Halva bar is produced by Ahdut Factory for Tehina Halva and Sweets. The company has a factory and its main offices in the Barkan Industrial Zone in the occupied West Bank, writes Who Profits in a 31 July email. Ahdut further profits from Israel’s settlement enterprise by running another production site in the industrial zone of Ariel West, also in the occupied West Bank.
In 2004, the International Court of Justice affirmed in its advisory opinion on the Israeli wall that settlements built on Palestinian land are illegal. In line with this, there is a growing movement within the European Union for a ban on Israeli settlement products.
The Ahdut factory is also a major provider of tahini sesame paste for the Israeli army, according to Who Profits.
The Electronic Intifada provided details of the case, including the case number, to the Delta Air Lines corporate communications department in Atlanta, Georgia, in writing and in several conversations by telephone, in order to give the company ample opportunity to deny or challenge any of the facts reported here. The company declined to do so.
With additional reporting by Ali Abunimah.