Consumer Kosher

The Case of the Baffling Bialy

August 1, 2005

The question had haunted him for years. If there was one sore point in an otherwise legendary career, it was Mac’s inability to find a problem with the OU. GAZING AT HIS REFLECTION in the gritty office window, Milton “Mac” Donald, Kosher Private I, was impressed at the new dimension seven days without shaving gave…

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The Consumer’s Role in Kashrus – Is Your Light On or Off?

July 27, 2005

It was a hot summer night when Chaim entered his local ice cream store, Great Taste Ice Cream Parlor, with the intention of purchasing his favorite treat, a medium-sized cup of Rocky Road ice cream with chocolate sprinkles. Chaim had frequented this nationally kosher certified franchise both locally and out-of-town based on a list that…

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The Kashrus of Pickled Herring

July 27, 2005

Have you ever noticed that when herring is served at a kiddush or during shalosh seudos, not only does the herring not have fins or scales, it often doesn’t even have its telltale skin? What identifies the herring as kosher fish? The answer is, of course, that originally there was a skin on the herring,…

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Kosher Trucking

July 7, 2005

A survey of the Kosher implications of the trucking industry.

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The Kashrus of Potato Products

June 30, 2005

Can you imagine having made Pesach without potatoes? What would you have eaten? How about Chanukah without latkes or a Shabbos Kiddush without potato kugel? Without a doubt, potatoes have been a staple of a Jewish diet for a long time.

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Vegetable Checking

June 30, 2005

In today’s modern society, food science has become highly complex. For the average consumer, attempting to read and understand ingredient labels has become a daunting task. For many, fresh or frozen vegetables remain a safe haven within the grasp of the consumer’s understanding, and are considered innocuous. Unfortunately, this perception is inaccurate and is predicated…

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Margarine

June 30, 2005

When, over a hundred years ago, margarine was first introduced as a cheap alternative to butter, it was so threatening to butter’s prized place on the kitchen table that federal regulations in the United States, influenced by a powerful U.S. dairy industry, prohibited margarine makers from adding colorants to margarine, condemning the new spread to remain pale and whitish.

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Franchising the Kosher Way

June 29, 2005

Franchising accounts for almost 50% of all retail business done in America and kosher consumers too are eager to literally take a bite into this boon. Notwithstanding for reasons soon to be outlined, these same consumers should know to proceed with caution before indulging. Most assuredly, there is indeed a kosher acceptable way to reap the benefits of the franchise business, but kosher consumers need to be aware of the nature of the industry and the consequent halachic considerations that must be met.

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Beverages

June 29, 2005

Companies all over the United States have been seeking kosher certification to provide kosher certified non-carbonated beverages to the large growing market of consumers who have asked for them. The growth of kosher certification for the beverage industry has provided a unique challenge to kashrus agencies, because beverage companies require a significant amount of involvement and scrutiny. Kashering demands a level of cooperation between the company, its workers and the kosher supervising staff because of an ongoing necessity to kasher between kosher and non-kosher products.

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Cooked or not? Spicing foods on Shabbos and related issues

June 29, 2005

Many questions regarding bishul on Shabbos are dependent on how the food was produced and due to modern production methods, in many cases the people with the most technical information on the topic are the kashrus professionals. Thus, consumers who want to know if they can put salt, spices or ketchup into their cholent, croutons into their soup, and similar questions will from time to time call the hashgachah agency that supervises those products – and this week’s column will discuss a number of those questions.

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