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Sainsbury’s have replied to our campaign calling for them to stop using suppliers that trade in products from illegal Israeli settlements. Israeli settlements are built on stolen Palestinian land and are illegal under international law.

Almost 2,000 of you have sent letters to Sainsbury’s asking them to stop buying from companies that are profiting from Israel’s occupation. Sainsbury’s have now replied to some of you, ignoring the issue of their relationship with complicit companies.

In April 2013, the Co-operative stated that in line with its ethical policy it would ‘no longer engage with any supplier of produce known to be sourcing from the Israeli settlements’. We are asking Sainsbury’s to follow the Co-operative’s good example and to stop trading with suppliers which profit from Israeli settlements.
“Thank you for your email. We want to offer our customers the best quality products throughout the year. In the past we have received requests to boycott the products of various countries and suppliers.

As a non-political organisation, we source our products according to their ability to meet our quality, safety and ethical standards.

We prefer to give our customers the opportunity to make their own decision in terms of the products they buy. That is why we work hard to label our products clearly and accurately so that our customers can make an informed choice when shopping.

We take our guidance on how to label the country of origin on products from the recommendations issued by DEFRA in December 2009. These guidelines give greater clarity on how to label produce from the occupied territories, i.e. West Bank (Palestinian produce) or West Bank (Israeli settlement produce).

Our commitment to clear labelling allows us to fulfil our promise to provide customers with honest information about the origins of their food. While some branded manufacturers may source some of their products from the occupied territories, we are not currently sourcing any Sainsbury’s own-brand food or non-food products from Israeli settlements in the West Bank however we do source a number of products from Palestinian growers.

We are founding members of the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) and require all our suppliers to meet the ETI Base Code for ethical sourcing. The Code covers nine key principles, including safe and hygienic working conditions, and payment of a fair wage. We take any allegations about the integrity of our sourcing very seriously and always investigate them thoroughly.

We continue our commitment to ethical, responsible sourcing and hope you feel reassured of our intentions to provide our customers with honest and open information about the food they buy.”

Please contact Sainsbury’s and ask them to stop dealing with companies that are complicit with Israel’s occupation.

Read more about the campaign>