After the company said it would no longer sell its ice cream in the occupied territories, New Jersey invoked a law that prohibits public investments in companies that engage in boycotts.
New Jersey has become the latest state to announce plans to divest from the company that owns Ben & Jerry’s over its decision to stop selling ice cream in Israeli-occupied territories.
The state’s Division of Investment sent a letter this week to Unilever, the parent company of Ben & Jerry’s whose American headquarters are in New Jersey, explaining that a state law passed in 2016 prohibited the investment of state pension funds in businesses that engaged in boycotts.
At the start of this week, New Jersey had $182 million invested in Unilever stock, bonds and other securities, a spokeswoman for the state’s treasury department said.
The move came as a response to Ben & Jerry’s announcement in mid-July that it would stop selling its products in the occupied Palestinian territories. “We believe it is inconsistent with our values for our product to be present within an internationally recognised illegal occupation,” the company said on its website.