Students to keep up Tnuva boycott despite price drop

Protesters not satisfied with dairy company's announcement that prices to go down by 15%; Tnuva chief Zehavit Cohen resigns amid antitrust probe.

By JPOST.COM STAFF, GLOBES
October 2, 2011 13:14
2 minute read.
Students to keep up Tnuva boycott despite price drop

Tnuva milk bags 298.88. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)

 
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The nationwide boycott against dairy giant Tnuva will continue despite the resignation of the company's chairperson Zehavit Cohen and the announcement that the company will lower prices by 15 percent, Tel Aviv Student Union chairman Uri Reshtik said on Sunday.

"The consumer protest is aimed at Tnuva, not at just one person," Reshtik said, adding that Cohen's resignation provided proof that the company's practices were problematic and the protest was succeeding. He added in an interview with Israel Radio that the 15 percent decrease in prices was a good start but that the company has "the ability to do more."

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Several student unions called for the boycott of Tnuva last month, saying the company was the leader of an industry that continuously raises prices, year after year.

The protest movement's Facebook page was also inundated with posts calling for a widening of the boycott to other large Israeli food manufacturers such as Strauss and Osem.

Tnuva Food Industries announced on Sunday that it would be lowering the prices of its dairy products, as the company's chairperson, Zehavit Cohen resigned her position, pending an investigation into the company by the Antitrust Authority.

The price of dozens of Tnuva products will go down by 15 percent beginning on Tuesday.



Tnuva representatives stated that the price decrease came as a result of a decrease in the price of milk.

Cohen announced on Sunday that she is resigning her position, pending the conclusion of an investigation into the company by the Antitrust Authority.

Cohen stated that she wants to focus her attention on the investigation. She will continue in her role as manager of Apax Partners in Israel, the conglomerate that owns Tnuva.

She will also retain her position on Tnuva's board of directors.

Shlomo Rodev will take Cohen's place as Tnuva's chairman on an interim basis. Rodev formerly served as the chairman of Bezek's board of directors.

The Antitrust Authority opened an investigation against Tnuva last week. Cohen and CEO Arik Shore were questioned for not providing information requested by the authority. Antitrust Authority investigators raided Tnuva’s offices last Sunday morning. Withholding information from the Antitrust Authority is a criminal offense.

As part of the authority’s investigation into the dairy market, it asked Tnuva and other dairy companies for information. Tnuva provided information, but the authority concluded that Tnuva was concealing information and that it had not provided everything demanded. Antitrust Authority investigators confiscated documents and questioned senior Tnuva executives under caution.

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