The BDS Movement and Co-Ops

Why is the BDS movement targeting food Co-Ops?

  • They are considered to be easy targets.
  • BDS activists choose small, rural American Food Co-Ops to spread their message.
  • The board members of these rural co-ops are often uninformed or unaware of the complexities of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. They are not prepared to respond to a well-organized BDS campaign.
  • Having never previously dealt with boycott proposals, rural Food Co-Ops have become a breeding ground for BDS.
  • This is an organized effort to vilify Israel at the grassroots level.

What happened with the Olympia Food Co-Op?

  • On July 15, 2010, the Olympia Food Co-Op’s board, which operates two grocery stores in Olympia, voted to boycott Israeli-made products
  • The co-op’s website says it will “refrain from dealing with non-Israeli companies that sell products or services to Israel that are used to violate the human rights of the Palestinians.”
  • The first of the co-op’s three conditions for cancelling its boycott, is that Israel “End its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the wall.”  The other two include “Israeli recognition of the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality,” and “Israeli respect, protection, and promotion of the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN resolution 194.”  (Palestinian BDS Campaign)

Two Things You Can Do

  1. Join your community’s Food Co-Op. Do not allow the BDS’s movement to stack Co-Ops with their supporters. Speak at local board meetings and vote in Co-Op elections. It costs only a few dollars to join, and will give you a voice!
  2. Write a petition to the Olympia Food Co-Op protesting their boycott and stating why it is slanderous, undemocratic and unbalanced. The board can be contacted at:

Information obtained from