The Buy Israeli Goods (BIG) campaign is a partnership between StandWithUs and the American-Israel Chamber of Commerce Chicago that works to mobilize supporters of Israel to bypass the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions campaign (BDS) and consume Israeli-made products locally. Through its website, BIG works as a consumer guide for the retail purchase of Israeli products, allowing customers to use the site as a tool to identify Israeli products likely to be available in their local stores and market area.
BIG has combined its extensive years of experience, resources and relationships in order to benefit the pro-Israel community, by promoting the consumption of Israeli goods and services. Currently, the campaign covers markets that include over 75% of the Jewish population of the United States, including the Midwest, offering retail products in cities such as St. Louis, Chicago. Minnesota, Michigan and Milwaukee.
The BIG website includes a store locator for people who need or want to find stores near their area that sell Israeli products. It also allows supporters of Israel to take videos and photos of themselves and their families purchasing the products and submit them to the site.
Why Buying Israeli Products?
As a philanthropist with a deep commitment to the Illinois Jewish community, Yosef Meystel knows that during these difficult times, when the ripple effect from the U.S. financial crisis is devastating to the rest of the world, supporting Israeli businesses becomes vital for the Jewish community. BIG works as an alternative to making the difference and support both America and Israel by purchasing MADE IN ISRAEL products whenever possible. Conscious spending for everyday or occasional needs has a major impact in helping people keep their jobs. It is a way to work against the economic damage done by war.
On the other hand, products from Israel are well-known in the world for meeting the highest quality standards, and many of them have unique, characteristics, features or designs that make them extremely appealing and usually are not available in other products manufactured by the competition. Many of these products can easily be incorporated into your regular shopping needs, while others are great if what you are looking for is something to can give away to somebody else who needs it.
Opposing BDS Campaign
By supporting The Buy Israeli Goods you are also helping to build a large community of shoppers who stand against the BDS campaign which boycotts Israeli products, professionals, professional associations and academic institutions, and artistic performances (in Israel and abroad). BDS is supported by Israel haters who want people to avoid consuming MADE IN ISRAEL products.
Some companies and brands that currently support BIG and stand against BDS are listed below:
J. C. Penny
Johnson & Johnson
Marks & Spencer (UK)
Products and Brands
Dead Sea Products
Wines-All Israeli Wineries
A Mobile App to Buy Israeli Products in the U.S.
In order to support Buy Israeli Goods and purchase Israeli products and services, most people get items from Israeli stores online or directly from American-based vendors. Luckily, for those who support BIG, a smartphone app was already developed by New Jersey Rabbi Daniel Cohen, and it helps consumers in the United States, who want to support Israel, find and purchase Israeli-made products from cosmetics, to art and wine or pretty much anything brought directly from Israel.
The app – which is available on Apple, Android and Windows Phone – is called Am Yisrael Buy and it was developed as a tool you can carry around with you in your pocket, and helps to prevent BDS to boycott Israeli products and goods since BDS already has several apps that identify Israeli-made goods. It doesn’t matter if there are many pro-Israel organization out there, most of them don’t connect to people on their mobiles, which is why an app that supports the BIG campaign became necessary and extremely useful for individuals to get the information out there.
By using the app, consumers will be able to find groups of Israeli-made products divided into categories, such as food, apparel, cosmetics, and home goods. They will also find links to the websites of Israeli companies that will allow them to identify American retailers that carry the Israeli brands or websites such as www.buyisraelgoods.org.