As of July 11th, the Cosmetics Directive of 1976 was updated with new guidelines aiming to put greater confidence in cosmetics products available in the EU, and amongst those is a plan to dictate future EU money for Israeli projects to be tied to the condition that it doesn't end up in settlements in the Palestinian territories.
Which means that as of 2014, every new Israeli project the Union plans to sponsor will require a signed document promising that no EU money will be invested in Israeli projects in the Westbank, east Jerusalem or on the Golan Heights.
Israeli organizations are not supposed to have outlets in the contested territories and the guidelines would only apply to future contracts, though so none of the already existing deals would be affected.
Stricter funding requirements will not affect investment from the EU - Ahava
Despite the new guidelines, the brand with a skin care range reports claim to contain mud excavated from the occupied Palestinian area, reckons that the funding it receives from the Union for research and development will not be affected as it does not operate out of the West Bank.
"This decision does not deal with Ahava," said representatives in a statement. "The company offices are at Airport City in Lod and are so registered with the Registrar of Companies. Its research activities are carried out at Kibbutz Ein Gedi, which is also within the Green Line."
"The mud and minerals used in Ahava's cosmetic products are not excavated in an occupied area. The minerals are mined in the Israeli part of the Dead Sea, which is undisputed internationally," it added.
The Israeli brand was established in 1988 and markets its extensive range of products on the basis that the Dead Sea ingredients it uses provide skin-moisturizing properties that can have an ‘age-delaying’ effect on the skin.
Around two-thirds of the Dead Sea’s Western shore lies on the Israel occupied West Bank, while the remaining area is in Israel, the Eastern shore of the sea lies in Jordan. It is renowned for its rich salt and mineral content, making it a mecca for tourists who are attracted by its reputation as being beneficial for a host of skin conditions, including psoriasis and eczema.