Saturday, 25 August 2012

Boycott Soda/Ecostream Shop in Western Road, Brighton


Sodastream/Ecostream Based in An Illegal Settlement

Sodastream, a carbonated beverage manufacturer is based in the Mishor Adumim settlement industrial zone. Mishor Adumim is an industrial are attached to the residential settlement of Ma'ale Adumim, East of Jerusalem in the Israeli occupied West Bank.
Regional context: the SodaStream factory is located at the Mishor Edomim Industrial Park, in the occupied West Bank.
Map: Shai Efrati. © Who Profits
 Israeli company Soda Club, which owns the Sodastream brandname, has opened a new store called Ecostream on Western Road in Brighton.

Sodastream, a carbonated beverage manufacturer is based in the Mishor Adumim settlement industrial zone. Mishor Adumim is an industrial area attached to the residential settlement of Ma'ale Adumim, East of Jerusalem in the Israeli occupied West Bank.

Corporate Watch contacted Steve Bannatyne, who has been employed by Sodastream to open the store in Brighton.

Bannatyne said that the store was a place where people could buy refillable bottles for Sodastream syrups and detergents and would be branching out into food products too. The store stocks a range of Sodastream products.

The eco-concept store, which is owned on a lease, is Sodastream's only store in the UK. The company chose Brighton because of the strong green movement in the city.

Last month Corporate Watch spoke to a woman who had attended an interview to work at Ecostream but had decided to withdraw her application after she became aware that Sodastream profit from ?from the Israeli occupation and human rights abuses?.

Bannatyne said he had passed the concerns on to the company and they had responded but that he felt he was ?not qualified to comment on behalf of the business?.

The expansion of Mishor Adumim settlement industrial zone, where the main Sodastream factory is based, is encroaching on the land of the Jahalin bedouin, who are being forcibly relocated to a reservation in Abu Dis, next to the Jerusalem Municipal rubbish dump.

Bannatyne told Corporate Watch that he had been taken on a short visit to Israel by Sodastream where he was taken to two of the company's factories. He was taken to the company's Ashkelon factory, inside 1948 Israel, where syrup is manufactured and to the ?Mishor? factory which manufactures ?machinery?. He said he was ?pleasantly surprised? by the conditions at the factories and that he was told that ?the workers were paid more than in the neighbouring villages?.

However, Palestinians living in the villages around Mishor Adumim are prevented from building any permanent structure under Israeli military orders. Their tents and huts, and even a primary school at Khan-al-Ahmar, are subject to demolition by the army (more details at www.scribd.com/doc/80963609/Amnesty-Briefing-Paper-on-Jahalin-Bedouin-forced-relocation).

These building restrictions prevent the establishment of any Palestinian businesses, meaning that local Palestinians are forced to work in the settlements. Palestinian agriculture is limited by the settlements monopoly on land and the restrictions placed on the grazing of cattle, often leading to the seizure of cattle by the army see

Palestinians working for Sodastream in Mishor Adumim are working in the context of the occupation. In January 2012 activists from Stop Sodastream Italy made the following statement in response to claims by the company that its workers were well treated: ?the fact remains that, as subjects of an occupation regime, these workers do not enjoy civil rights (including the right of workers to organize) and are under constant threat of having their permits to work in the settlement revoked by the company at any moment.?

"Palestinian workers often have no choice but to work in the settlements, with high unemployment rates that are a direct result of the Israeli occupation. The 2011 United Nations Conference on Trade and Development report explicitly links the decline in Palestinian agricultural and industrial sectors and the dire humanitarian conditions with Israeli government policies, in particular the confiscation of land and natural resources, restrictions on movement of people and goods, and isolation from international markets. Only a colonial mindset could claim to provide jobs to the very same people whose land and freedom have been stolen."

The Palestinian call for boycott, divestment and sanctions urges a boycott of all Israeli companies until Israel complies with international humanitarian law, recognizes the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality, the rights of return of refugees and ends the siege of Gaza and the occupation of all lands occupied in 1967.

Sodastream products are sold in the UK at Robert Dyas, John Lewis, Argos, Comet, Lakeland and some Sainsbury and Asda stores.

For more information on Soda Club see pages 96-102 and who profits - soda stream 


2 comments:

Daniel Marks said...

Another excellently written post by the author of this excellent blog!

Several years ago we were given one of the now infamous Soda Stream kits as a present from a settler neighbor in return for Shabbat hospitality that we made available to visiting family – it was either a bar mitzvah or a festival – my memory fails me.

We used the canister occasionally, though only for producing soda water – never purchasing fruit syrup produced in Ashkelon (occupied since 1948). I had no reason for complaint.

Then, about a year ago it transpired that I began a Carlsberg (produced in occupied Ashkelon too) one night only to fall asleep and find it to be flat the next day. I told my wife I’d try to gas it up with the help of the Soda Stream, she advised me not to do so.

Not heeding the suggestion of the old trouble and strife that I waited until she had disappeared to another room to do some ironing and carried out my plan. Our readers may guess the continuance of my sad tale. The bottle exploded and the beer shot up to our ceiling and everywhere else. I told Ariel (youngest) to stand look-out for mum as I endeavored to wash the roof without being caught. This I did, but eventually my scruples forced me to confess – hardly one of my prouder moments.

I have no idea whether the explosion was part of a Palestinian plot to destroy our happy city house by house, but I suspect as much. I find it hard to believe that such a fiasco would have befallen my great aunt Edith (RIP) of Brighton fame.

Tony Greenstein said...

Yes, highly amusing Daniel. However you don't need to send the same post twice. Once is more than enough. Though on second thoughts it might indeed have been a plot to destroy Ariel, but a Zionist plot I fear!