Jaffa oranges are the world-wide variety of citrus grown in many countries. Its origin however wsa in the Jaffa precinct of historic Palestine.
I understand the point of complaining that Jaffa Grapefruit are being sold by Coles Australia under the cover of false labelling.
I realise also that it puts a lie to the claim of ‘Ethical Sourcing’ by Coles (see Coles Ethical Sourcing Supplier Fact Sheet). Especially when its purchase of fruit involves the exploitation of Palestinian people whose land was stolen by deception and by force of arms.
Boycott Divestment & Sanctions (BDS) groups in Australia request that the fruit be labelled ‘Product of Israel’ so that people can choose not to buy those fruit — fair enough.
But to label Jaffa Grapefruit/oranges as a ‘Product of Israel’ contains an historic lie.
The incorrectly labelled Jaffa (in Arabic: يَافَا, Yāfā) oranges/grapefruit were the product of Palestine long before Israel existed as a ‘country of origin’.
For example, the Palestinian people of the village Al-Jammasin in the precinct of Jaffa grew citrus for generations before the Zionist settlers came in 19th and 20th centuries.
Long before Israel was mandated as a country, Jaffa oranges were famously exported to Europe and to the U.K. in particular.
The people of Al-Jammasin, like Palestinians elsewhere, were driven from their homes by the Hagannah and Stern terrorist gangs in 1947 before the creation of Israel as a state by the UN in the following year.
So it is fruitless (excuse the pun) to complain to the Coles and government regulators claiming that Jaffa oranges/grapefruit are a ‘Product of Israel’.
Such claims are no more accurate than what Coles is doing at Lawnton in Brisbane when it labels Jaffa Grapefruit of ‘Mixed Origin’ or at Coles Broadway (Sydney) which labels the fruit as “Product of Australia” (see image).
The hypocrisy of such false labelling by retailers is further demonstrated by the Israeli parent company JAFFA’s sourcing at least some of its products in Israeli settlements in occupied Palestine (see the article titled (poorly) COLES labels Israeli grapefruit “Product of Australia”)
Both Israel and Australia are settler states.
Australia like the state of Israel is a lie — just an older one i.e. the name Australia has no meaning for the first nation people here. The invasion was illegal. Aboriginal land was never bought. It was stolen. No treaty was ever offered. Sovereign lands were taken.
Product of Palestine
Jaffa grapefruit/oranges would have been labelled ‘Product of Palestine’ in the UK and Europe prior to 1947.
I am talking about something as recent as my mother and fathers’ generation. When I was born, their generation did not speak of Israel, they spoke of Palestine. They did so because it was under British mandate.
The Jaffa citrus fruit should be labelled ‘Product of occupied Palestine’.
Of course, Graeme Samuel at the ACCC and Labor Governments that appointed him will never agree to this because it exposes their involvement in perpetuating the lie that is Israel. These governments and their regulators are the beneficiaries of the lie of colonial occupation both here and there.
My point is, that to change this, we will have to do more than write letters about incorrectly labelled fruit.
15 Feb 2011