Al Arz Tahini… Made in Israel

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An Israeli company is using the Lebanese Cedar to market the well-known Tahini, used to prepare dishes such as Hummus, in order to sell it in some major markets.

Check out the pictures of the item, taken by Twitter user @KhaladK:

Before you freak out, the pictures are not taken in Lebanon. Mr. Khalad is one of the many Lebanese who decided to seek a better life abroad. In his case, the country in question is Australia, which is where the pictures were taken.

According to @KhaladK, the Israeli product is of a better quality than its Lebanese counterpart, which leaks the oil it contains and isn’t as appealing. He didn’t purchase it of course. He sent me the pictures out of curiosity’s sake.

There’s nothing scandalous, in my opinion, about this. I just found it interesting and possibly conversation-worthy to point out the use of the Lebanese Cedar to sell a Lebanese paste by companies residing in non-other than Lebanon’s sworn enemy.

Globalization sure transcends blue lines. The tahini is also kosher.

Thoughts, if any?

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13 thoughts on “Al Arz Tahini… Made in Israel

  1. There IS something scandalous about using another country’s national symbol to promote one’s own products. It is clear that they intend to imply some sense of authenticity through use of the Cedar tree. That is false marketing. It has nothing to do with the fact that the country is at political war with Lebanon and everything to do with the fact that this is a lie to consumers. Lebanon should protect the use of the Cedar as a brand (at least, since we don’t protect it as a flora!) and the relevant consumer authority should be notified.

    Reply
  2. There are also shops and falafel stands in Israel with Lebanese flags. There is at least on “cedar restaurant” in northern Israel. I don’t know whether these are all run by Lebanese-Israelis but I doubt all of them went from militiaman to hummusman/falafeldude. I have seen the cedar tree on products in the supermarket as well. Jews come from like 190 different countries so many of them took their cuisine with them. For example, you can find “authentic” Yemenite food and they might market it with the name/flag of that country.

    In fact, I believe I have at least one Israeli product with a cedar flag on it which is kinda funny. I’ll share it with you.

    Reply
    • It would be weird to have a religious symbol (the Star of David) on food. And I’ve yet to find an ‘Israeli’ food that wasn’t stolen from Palestinians and claimed as their own or that has been brought by the Jews who immigrated (which would therefore make the food European (West/East), Moroccan, Iraqi, Egyptian etc. and we’d still find it in those lands.)

      Reply
  3. The website for Al Arz Tahini says “Al Arz Tahini was founded in 1992 as a small family business in Nazareth, Israel. Assad Zaher, an engineer by training, designed a special production method . . . ” (http://english.alarz.co.il/1136-Our-Story.aspx)

    The question is why the company felt the need to misrepresent, at least to a degree, its product by suggesting it is Lebanese or Lebanese inspired. Odd indeed.

    As with all Israeli products, I would boycott.

    Reply
    • Yeah after having lived under military rule for many years, then faced with legal and de facto discrimination what Arab families from Nazareth really need is a boycott of their product because they happen to be Israeli citizens. You know, the majority of the Galilee is Arab, the government focuses too much on the center (Tel Aviv) so there are programs to help people in the country’s peripheral regions. However some people don’t like to see Arab localities or Arab-Jewish joint projects flourish. The Israeli far right must be really happy with your attitude.

      Reply
    • Becaise they are sure that us arabs or most of us wont read the back of the product and will only see the flag and the name… And thats typically us. So we the had an opportunity and they took advantage and if not for the above article many ppl will keep buying such products…

      Reply
  4. what do you expect from such a government/country. They took falafel, tabouli, humus, macaroons, knafa, baklava, they stole a country! so why should they stop at (al arzeh).
    I only respect the thrive of exporting made in israel products which i wish someday the arab countries will start manufacturing and importing instead of waiting the west and east to export their stuff to us.

    Reply
  5. If they think that a Lebanese symbol will make their product sell, then why not go all the way and show how proud they are by raising the Lebanese flag over their factory in Israel, maybe above or along side their Israeli flag? But if they are proud Israelis (whether of Lebanese or any other Arab or non Arab origin) then I’ll boycott their products.

    Reply

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