Daf ha-kashrus

Weighty Matters, Not to be Taken Lightly

Vol. 23 / No. 4

Those who don’t learn from the past are doomed to repeat it. A few summers ago, a non-kosher supermarket in Long Island City purchased a used scale for its meat department. The scale had been previously used in a kosher butcher shop. The scale was pre-programmed to include Shechitas Bais Yoseph. Lo and behold the supermarket sold pork chops which were labeled Shechitas Bais Yoseph.

A Stop & Shop in-store bakery, which is under the ABC, suddenly had an XYZ certification symbol printed on their weight labels. In addition, the products were Dairy but missing the “D” designation. What had happened? The scale was reprogrammed and the certification mark was inadvertently changed from ABC to a different hashgocha and the “D” omitted. The error was promptly fixed.

What we must learn:

  • When a scale is being taken out of service, the pre-programmed kosher symbol must be deactivated.
  • When a scale is serviced, the labels should be checked that the proper kosher symbol and any designation (i.e. dairy, fish or meat) is correct.


by Rabbi Howard Katzenstein, OU Business Manager