Ki Eshmerah Shabbos With Rabbi Tzvi Ortner – The Kashrus Awareness Project

Watch this in depth discussion about the Shabbos Keeper and kosher technology with Rabbi Tzvi Ortner, Director of the Technology Department at OU Kosher. With Rabbi Yitzchok Hisiger presented by the Kashrus Awareness Project in conjunction with TorahAnytime.

Introduction to the Episode

Q: Can you introduce us to the topic of this episode? A: This episode features Rabbi Tzvi Ortner, Director of the Technology Department at the OU Kosher, discussing the challenges and solutions related to technology, specifically appliances, in observing Shabbos and Yontov.

Role and Challenges in Technology and Jewish Law

Q: What does the role of Director of the Technology Department at the OU involve? A: It involves analyzing and addressing issues related to the use of modern appliances in observance of Jewish law, particularly during Shabbos and Yontov, and working with manufacturers to create user-friendly solutions.

Collaboration with Manufacturers

Q: How do you work with appliance manufacturers for the benefit of the Jewish community? A: The department collaborates with manufacturers like GE to develop appliances that address halachic concerns, ensuring they are convenient and compliant for Shabbos and Yontov use.

Evolving Technology and Jewish Law

Q: What are the major changes in appliances over the years affecting their use on Shabbos? A: Advances in technology have introduced new challenges, such as digital thermostats and complex sensors, requiring ongoing halachic evaluation and technological adjustments.

Addressing Modern Appliance Concerns

Q: How are concerns with modern refrigerators addressed from a halachic perspective? A: Solutions include developing Shabbos-friendly modes and devices like the Shabbos Keeper, which automate appliance functions to avoid halachic issues without compromising appliance effectiveness.

Consumer Awareness and Education

Q: What is important for consumers to know about “Sabbath mode” in appliances? A: Consumers should be aware that not all “Sabbath modes” are halachically compliant. It’s crucial to understand the standards and certifications behind these modes and make informed decisions.

The Shabbos Keeper: A Solution for Appliances

Q: What is the Shabbos Keeper and how does it work? A: The Shabbos Keeper is a device developed to make refrigerators and ovens Shabbos-compliant by automating certain functions, ensuring they do not cause halachic issues during Shabbos and Yontov.

Conclusion and Future Directions

Q: What future discussions are planned regarding technology and Jewish law? A: Future discussions will explore innovations in ovens and other appliances to address Shabbos and Yontov concerns, emphasizing the ongoing collaboration between halachic authorities and technology experts.


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