The Shmooze

Domestic or Imported? Israeli Supermarkets Locked in Diaper Duel

By Renee Ghert-Zand

  • Print
  • Share Share
iStokphoto

At first it was about what went in one end, and now it’s about what comes out the other. Israel’s cottage cheese revolution has turned into a diaper war.

With Israeli consumers up in arms over the high price of food and basic necessities, the country’s Finance and Industry and Trade and Labor ministries are pointing fingers at the overly centralized production of animal feed, and at hidden costs of agreements between supermarkets and vendors that end up being passed on to consumers. There is also grumbling about the fact that Israelis pay more for some imported food items, like breakfast cereal, than do consumers for the same products in other Western countries.

But the biggest fuss lately surrounding all this sticker shock has been over disposable baby diapers. Just as supermarket chains recently waged a no-holds-barred price war over cottage cheese to keep shoppers coming in the doors, so are they now taking off their gloves in the fight to attract that captive audience made up of parents of children yet to be potty trained.

The Mega supermarket chain announced that it would begin importing Huggies diapers made by Kimberly-Clark’s factory in Turkey, which ostensibly cost less than Huggies made in Israel. Hogla-Kimberly, the company that makes the diapers in Israel, put out ads saying that Mega’s Turkish diapers are of lesser quality than their Israeli-made counterparts.

To protect babies and their parents from the possibility of messy leaks (and its stores from losing paying customers), Mega sent its Turkish diapers for testing to the Israel Standards Institute to prove Hogla-Kimberly’s claim wrong. It also announced that it would sue Hogla-Kimberly for using Mega’s logo in its campaign to smear the Turkish nappies.

While the titans of Israeli industry and commerce slug it out by filing complicated legal briefs, for all practical purposes, moms and dads are going to be the ones in deep doo-doo judging whether it’s true that nothing hugs like Israeli Huggies.


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: Mega Supermarkets, Kimberly-Clark, Israel, Diapers, Huggies, Cottage Cheese, Turkey

The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.




Find us on Facebook!
  • "Selma. Nearly 50 years ago it was violent Selma, impossibly racist Selma, site of Bloody Sunday, when peaceful civil rights marchers made their first attempt to cross the Pettus Street Bridge on the way to the state capitol in Montgomery, Alabama." http://jd.fo/r50mf With the 50th anniversary approaching next spring, a new coalition is bringing together blacks, Jews and others for progressive change.
  • Kosovo's centuries-old Jewish community is down to a few dozen. In a nation where the population is 90% Muslim, they are proud their past — and wonder why Israel won't recognize their state. http://jd.fo/h4wK0
  • Israelis are taking up the #IceBucketChallenge — with hummus.
  • In WWI, Jews fought for Britain. So why were they treated as outsiders?
  • According to a new poll, 75% of Israeli Jews oppose intermarriage.
  • Will Lubavitcher Rabbi Moshe Wiener be the next Met Council CEO?
  • Angelina Jolie changed everything — but not just for the better:
  • Prime Suspect? Prime Minister.
  • Move over Dr. Ruth — there’s a (not-so) new sassy Jewish sex-therapist in town. Her name is Shirley Zussman — and just turned 100 years old.
  • From kosher wine to Ecstasy, presenting some of our best bootlegs:
  • Sara Kramer is not the first New Yorker to feel the alluring pull of the West Coast — but she might be the first heading there with Turkish Urfa pepper and za’atar in her suitcase.
  • About 1 in 40 American Jews will get pancreatic cancer (Ruth Bader Ginsberg is one of the few survivors).
  • At which grade level should classroom discussions include topics like the death of civilians kidnapping of young Israelis and sirens warning of incoming rockets?
  • Wanted: Met Council CEO.
  • “Look, on the one hand, I understand him,” says Rivka Ben-Pazi, a niece of Elchanan Hameiri, the boy that Henk Zanoli saved. “He had a family tragedy.” But on the other hand, she said, “I think he was wrong.” What do you think?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.