Victory for Facebook boycott of cottage cheese : Dairy products cooperative Tnuva announced Wednesday that it would reduce the price of cottage cheese sold to retailers from NIS 5.20 ($1.50) to NIS 4.55 ($1.30).
According to the company, this would allow retailers to offer the product to consumers for a maximal price of NIS 5.90 ($1.70).
The Strauss and Tara food conglomerates joined the move several hours later.
It should be noted that the reduced price is higher than the price demanded by the Facebook protest group – up to NIS 5 ($1.45).
Itzik Alrov, the boycott's initiator, told Ynet in response: "We welcome the decision to lower the price, but 5.90 shekels is too much. The cottage cheese boycott will continue.
"Our protest is democratic, and after Tnuva's announcement I conducted a quick survey among the members of our group. Their response was unequivocal: Tnuva's move is just not enough."
Tnuva Chairwoman Zehavit Cohen said in response, "Today all manufacturers and chains in Israel are beginning a new era in their relationship with consumers. We too will devote time and resources to their era."
CEO Arik Schor added, "We were surprised by the extent of the public's emotional involvement towards Tnuva and cottage cheese.
"We understand that cottage cheese symbolizes the public struggle and the public's frustration over the cost of living and the rising food prices," he said.
"This is a global phenomenon, and just like other countries deal with the inevitable rise of food prices, the Israeli government will have to provide a solution for a problem which may worsen in the coming years."
Special offers following boycott
Earlier Wednesday, the Shufersal supermarket chain announced Wednesday that it would reduce the price of a cottage cheese container to NIS 5.90.
About 10 days ago, the chain launched an unlimited offer of "two for NIS 10" on cottage cheese and white cheese of three different companies. This offer continues despite the reduced price announced Wednesday.
Immediately after the Facebook boycott was launched, the Rami Levy supermarket chain, in an unusual move, promised to sell Strauss cottage cheese for NIS 4.90 ($1.40) until the end of 2011.
Shufersal CEO Richard Hunter said Wednesday, "As early as two weeks ago, we launched a 'two for the price of one' offer for all types of cottage cheese, followed by a "two for NIS 10' offer, which included all types of white cheeses for the first time."
Meanwhile, the initiators of the cottage cheese boycott have decided to include additional dairy products in their struggle. One of the boycott organizers said Tuesday, "We are expanding our struggle to yogurts which cost more than NIS 2.90 (84 cents), and to yellow cheese too."
Also Wednesday, the Mega Retail company announced a 10% discount on goods supervised by the government – including basic products like milk, bread, sour cream, butter, yellow cheese and eggs.
The chain is also launching an advertising campaign aimed at encouraging the public to consume supervised goods.
"Food manufacturers are offering many products similar to the supervised goods, but for prices higher by tens of percentage points," said Mega Retail CEO Zeev Vurembrand.
"Despite the growing consumer protest, food manufacturers are adamant in their refusal not to reduce food prices, and therefore it's important for the public to know that there's a cheap and more affordable alternative for their shopping basket. We plan to encourage the public to consume supervised goods, and one of our ways to do so is to make these products stand out on the shelves in our stores."
Meirav Crystal and Ran Rimon contributed to this report
- Follow Ynetnews on Facebook