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Nir Barkat, Israel’s Economy Minister, has called for a boycott of two major Israeli food companies – Strauss and Osem – due to their failure to meet their commitments to freeze prices amidst an increase in the cost of living. The Strauss Group, which started as a small dairy producer in Nahariya in 1939, has grown into one of Israel’s largest food manufacturers, employing around 12,000 workers, with 6,500 based in Israel.

Barkat criticized Strauss for continuing to raise prices while distributing hundreds of millions of dollars in profits to its shareholders. He stated that the company complains about financial difficulties but fails to fulfill its promises to consumers. In response to this, Barkat announced the inclusion of a black sticker on products that have increased their prices during the ongoing war without government approval, urging consumers to boycott Strauss products.

Similarly, Barkat called for a boycott of Osem for similar reasons. He emphasized the importance of punishing companies that take advantage of consumers during times of economic hardship, such as during the war. By placing companies on the economic blacklist/whitelist, the government aims to protect consumers from unfair price hikes and hold businesses accountable for their actions.

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