Because of the rise in customer’s demand for clean, vegan, and allergen free foods, the need for Kosher food has risen as well.
OU Kosher’s Rabbi Menachem Genack discusses the rise in Kosher foods:
Food Business News: Kosher certification has come to be so much more than a visual cue to identify approved foods for Jewish consumers. Please describe the different consumer groups who seek out kosher-certified foods. What does kosher mean to these segments?
Rabbi Menachem Genack: The dynamics of the kosher market are often misunderstood. While the initial demand for kosher products comes from committed kosher consumers, there’s more to it than that. As reflected in the famous ad of the 70’s, “You don’t have to be Jewish to eat Levy’s rye,” the kosher market extends far beyond the Jewish population.
Consumers include Muslims, Seventh Day Adventists and vegetarians who purchase kosher products for religious or moral reasons. Additionally, those with milk related allergies, health-conscious individuals and discerning consumers often view reliable kosher symbols as signs of health, quality and integrity. They, too, comprise the very large pool of devoted consumers.
Kosher consumers, however, do not fully account for the remarkable growth pattern that we have witnessed in recent years in the kosher industry.
What is driving this growth of kosher certification?
Rabbi Genack: For starters, companies can ill-afford to allow their competitors to have a significant marketing advantage. We often receive applications from companies whose competitors have chosen to be kosher certified. This dynamic is so powerful that many areas, such as baking and snack foods, have extremely high concentrations of kosher supervision, and some staple industries, including vinegar, flavors and vegetable oils have kosher programs in almost every facility in the U.S.
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