Wow: European Court Rules That Food Made in Israeli West Bank Settlements Must Carry Special Labels

Retailers must mark food made in Israeli settlements with special labels, the European Union’s highest court has ruled, in a decision that could affect products found on British shelves.

The European Court of Justice said on Tuesday that items must be clearly labelled if they originate from an Israeli settlement.

The ruling concludes a long-running case brought by Psagot, a winemaker based in a West Bank settlement north of Jerusalem, which was challenging labelling requirements in France.

“Foodstuffs originating in the territories occupied by the State of Israel must bear the indication of their territory of origin,” the Luxembourg-based court said in a statement, adding that if it they came from a settlement, they must carry an “indication of that provenance”.

The West Bank and East Jerusalem were captured by Israel during the Six Day War in 1967, and the first settlements were established shortly afterwards.

Today nearly 700,000 Israelis live in both areas, amounting to nearly a tenth of Israel’s entire Jewish population.

The international community, including Britain, considers the territory to be occupied by Israel and opposes settlement construction.