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[#] Sat Feb 24 2007 18:31:43 EST from fxflynn @ Uncensored

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This is more than likely going to get me called a Nazi,

 but here goes:

 

  What's the deal with kosher? I understand that the (K) symbol or Pareve or the different sumbols like the (U) signify that is is fit for eating by person of the Jewsih faith, but here's my question :

 What's the cost added to it?

 I ask this since a number of the budget (generic) foods we buy such as mustard, grape jelly, peanut butter are not kosher.

 Now, I know in order to get something certified kosher, it's has to pass kosher certification by a rabbi, yes?

 

 What are costs involved in getting something certified kosher?

 

 I honestly do not care if I get responses calling me a Nazi by implying me asking this that I'm anti-semetic. Soem of my best friends are Jewish, and I truly believe every religion is equal to every other. But I've never gotten a straight answer to that.

 anytime I see it brought up, various Jewsih ggroups say that those who ask that are portraying anti-semetic comments.

 No, i'm npot. But I would like to know what it costs to certify something kosher.

 Heck, i even asked the rabbi at one of the temples in Edmonton here, and his response was that that sort of information was not avaliable to people who were not of the Jewish faith.

 so it raises my curiousity - I've never been able to get a straight answer.

 

 Even snopes.com, (Urban Legends) which addresses the issue, doesn't give a straight answer on what the actual cost is,

 just assuring us that it isn't a conspiracy to have a Jewish Tax. 

 http://www.snopes.com/racial/business/kosher.htm

 



[#] Sat Feb 24 2007 18:52:26 EST from 2Dog @ Uncensored

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You are a Nazi by NOT suggesting "the best" brand of hot dogs. Do you not know
summer is just a short time away? Prepare! I have mesquite to burn, and I am not
wasting it on ordinary Oscar-Meyer weiners!!!

[#] Sat Feb 24 2007 19:06:21 EST from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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flynn: no problem at all. I'm sure the various Jews among us would be more than happy to add some insight about the production and distribution of kosher food products.

[#] Sat Feb 24 2007 19:15:00 EST from wizard of aahz @ Uncensored

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Flynn - Part of the issue is supply and demand. There isn't much demand for kosher food overall, thereby there isn't much supply which means that the ability to do some of the "make it up through volume" techniques aren't available. This is especially true with kosher meats.. Not to mention, that the butchering process is also different. Add another layer for a certification of something being kosher and you've added enough additional steps to raise costs. I'm sure there's lots more to the issue.

[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 02:33:21 EST from fxflynn @ Uncensored

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 Well, aahz, that doesn't make sense to me, in the overall sense of things kosher and non-kosher. There is so much kosher products out there, that cost explanation should be relatively simple for what is involved in certifying certain products kosher.

  Just as example, I'm looking right now at the products that I have that are kosher, just glancing at the refrigerator :

 Coca- Cola, bleach (Javex - no, we do not keep it by the fridge, just happened to notice the kosher symbol on it when I was doing laundry this afternoon something like (COR 281)), ketchup (Heinz 57), relish (no name brand) , BBQ sauce (Bull's Eye), Butter Flavoured Syrup (Safeway- COR422), Authentic Louisiana Hot Sauce (President's Choice), Montreal Steak Rub Marinade (Club House), Miracle Whip Hot n Spicy , Hamburger Relish (Safeway - symbol is BC-K ) , Pediatric Electrolyte (Life Brand) , HP Sauce , Minced Ginger (Derlea Foods) , Worcestershire Sauce (Safeway),  E.D. Smith Rhubarb-Strawberry Pie Filling, Dark Red Kidney Beans (no name brand).

 And that's just for starter - this was just a quick glance through the fridge - I'm sure we have tons more in the freezer and the pantry, so there may not be much of a demand for kosher products, but there certainly is a vast number of them.

 

Sat 24 Feb 2007 07:15:00 PM EST from wizard of aahz@uncnsrd

Flynn - Part of the issue is supply and demand. There isn't much demand for kosher food overall, thereby there isn't much supply which means that the ability to do some of the "make it up through volume" techniques aren't available. This is especially true with kosher meats.. Not to mention, that the butchering process is also different. Add another layer for a certification of something being kosher and you've added enough additional steps to raise costs. I'm sure there's lots more to the issue.



[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 02:55:57 EST from triLcat @ Uncensored

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Okay... the basics - For a "regular" product (something which contains no meat or meat products including gelatin or rennet) to be kosher, all that needs to happen is that there needs to be a supervisor (a rabbi) at the plant at least most of the time, making sure there is no mixing of any forbidden ingredients, machinery with forbidden ingredients, etc.

This is why most brands of ketchup, mayonnaise, drinks, etc are kosher. Since the lines are generally kept separate from other product lines anyway, the cost involved with making it kosher is a single employee salary or so.

Despite what Aahz said about supply and demand, the reality is that many food producers realize that sometimes large-scale caterers have a single kosher kitchen, and buy all their "regular" ingredients kosher to avoid having several types of each.

Meat and chicken require a different method of slaughter which is less efficient on a large scale and therefore more costly. Additionally, meat and chicken can be disqualified after a kosher slaughtering if the animal has certain defects (the only one I can think of off the top of my head is a certain kind of bumps in the lungs). After slaughter, the animal must be processed with salt and have main arteries cut out to eliminate any flowing blood.

Rennet and gelatin are the subject of numerous rabbinical debates, and most observant Jews (including the ones who give kosher certification) require that they be synthetic/vegetable in nature or from animals which were slaughtered in a kosher slaughterhouse.  

Does this answer your question? 



[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 04:25:43 EST from fxflynn @ Uncensored

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So, just to make sure it's clear and no confusion, when Heinz makes kosher ketchup, when Life Brand makes kosher pedialyte, when javex makes kosher bleach, at each and every plant a rabbi is required to be there basically full-time?

Oy vey! How do they get that many rabbis away from their clerical duties to monitor the plants to ensure that they are meeting kosher standards?

As well, why the different kosher symbols such as (MK), Pareve , COR, (U) - I understand it is different rabbinical symbols, such as COR stands for the Canadian kosher certification, the Kashruth Council of Canada, however, is not kosher kosher? Or does kosher from BC-K differ from kosher from U or MK or COR? Can there not be one universal kosher symbol?

 

And I can understand foods - but why does BLEACH need to be kosher?!?

 

Sun 25 Feb 2007 02:55:57 AM EST from triLcat@uncnsrd

Okay... the basics - For a "regular" product (something which contains no meat or meat products including gelatin or rennet) to be kosher, all that needs to happen is that there needs to be a supervisor (a rabbi) at the plant at least most of the time, making sure there is no mixing of any forbidden ingredients, machinery with forbidden ingredients, etc.

This is why most brands of ketchup, mayonnaise, drinks, etc are kosher. Since the lines are generally kept separate from other product lines anyway, the cost involved with making it kosher is a single employee salary or so.

Does this answer your question?



[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 04:46:21 EST from triLcat @ Uncensored

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Okay... Yes, a rabbi needs to be at each plant. You'd be amazed at the number of men who go to rabbinical school and don't want to serve a congregation. I know a family that has 4 sons. All four are rabbis. All four also have doctorates. A rabbi isn't like a priest. It's an educational term, not a life-calling.

Pareve doesn't fit into the same category as the others. Pareve means neither meat nor dairy - i.e. that it may be eaten with meat or dairy (since kosher laws require that meat and dairy be kept separate.)

The different symbols are different rabbi "unions."  COR is the main Canadian rabbinical council. OU is the Orthodox Union and is one of the big ones in the US. There are certain things which are accepted by some, but not all, religious Jews. For example, a dairy which has only cows produces milk which is acceptable to most religious Jews. However, some require that there be a rabbi there to watch each and every step of the milking process, until the milk is packaged for sale. Some "unions" will certify products which use unsupervised milk, while others will not certify them. (The reason some allow uncertified milk is because non-kosher animals cannot legally be used for standard milk production in the USA and much of the western world).

 As to bleach being kosher, I suppose if you bleach your countertops, you'd want to know that when you put your food down on them, you're not getting any trace non-kosher ingredients on them.

I don't personally think it's a necessity, but to each his own. 

 

 

 

Sun 25 Feb 2007 04:25:43 AM EST from fxflynn@uncnsrd

So, just to make sure it's clear and no confusion, when Heinz makes kosher ketchup, when Life Brand makes kosher pedialyte, when javex makes kosher bleach, at each and every plant a rabbi is required to be there basically full-time?

Oy vey! How do they get that many rabbis away from their clerical duties to monitor the plants to ensure that they are meeting kosher standards?

As well, why the different kosher symbols such as (MK), Pareve , COR, (U) - I understand it is different rabbinical symbols, such as COR stands for the Canadian kosher certification, the Kashruth Council of Canada, however, is not kosher kosher? Or does kosher from BC-K differ from kosher from U or MK or COR? Can there not be one universal kosher symbol?

 

And I can understand foods - but why does BLEACH need to be kosher?!?

 




[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 08:11:15 EST from Ragnar Danneskjold @ Uncensored

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Umm, I saw how Pepsi declares their product kosher. At then end of the line, in a warehouse, a rabbi blesses the entire warehouses contents. Lame, eh?


[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 08:30:22 EST from triLcat @ Uncensored

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That simply isn't true. There's a rabbi who examines every delivery made to the plant to make sure that all the products that go into it are kosher.

and there's no "blessing" of the food. 



[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 15:24:24 EST from Magus @ Uncensored

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I'd guess (although I haven't looked into it) that the rabbi (learned person who is familiar enough with the laws to be trusted to know if they're being followed) can double as some sort of shift/line supervisor or whatever such that they're not paid *just* to stand around and watch (or, rather, they just make sure the person they were going to have standing around and watching anyway also checks for these things)

[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 15:37:49 EST from Ragnar Danneskjold @ Uncensored

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triL:

I was there.... Stood there while a rabbi said a prayer over a warehouse full of Pepsi. I also inquired about it, because it seemed so strange.

[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 15:48:59 EST from triLcat @ Uncensored

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Ragnar: that makes no sense. No prayer exists which one would say over said pepsi.


[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 15:50:03 EST from triLcat @ Uncensored

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Magus: the "mashgiach" (the kashrut supervisor) needs to be able to look around everywhere at his own leisure, and can't really be doing any other job.


[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 16:13:09 EST from Magus @ Uncensored

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Hmmm...random thought. Can a non-Jew with access to all the relevant information get one of these jobs?

[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 16:35:11 EST from Peter Pulse @ Uncensored

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You don't need a rabbi there full time. Jaime went through the process of dealing with all the various certifying authorities, to find out what steps they would need to take to get their food (she works for a baby food company) kosher certified. None of them demanded full time employees (which would have been ridiculous anyway, since they make the product in batches usually once a month or so). They look at the process and then based on that set a schedule for how often they need to come to inspect.

[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 18:00:17 EST from Magus @ Uncensored

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Peter, that's consistent with what I'd been told in the past, but I didn't have anything other than hearsay to back it up.

[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 18:42:42 EST from fxflynn @ Uncensored

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tril: Thanks for the thorough and very detailed explanation - it clears up 90% of the questions in regards to kosher law.

 

 I just wish that the various unions would sit down, hammer out the details and have on standard universal kosher symbol. I mean,if you agree with say, the COR's rules, but not (U), you'd either have to import a lot of food to meet your kosher requirements, or basically starve to death, no?

 Do you know people who will buy say (U) certification, but not say BC_K or COR, for instance? (Or others I may not have thought of at the moment?) 



[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 19:07:06 EST from nadia @ Uncensored

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Feb 25 2007 4:13pm from Magus @uncnsrd
Hmmm...random thought. Can a non-Jew with access to all the relevant

information get one of these jobs?


i think so, and the only reason why i say that is back when my dad was at beth israel, during one of strikes the rabbi put him in charge of making sure the cafeteria was kept kosher.

[#] Sun Feb 25 2007 19:12:01 EST from nadia @ Uncensored

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details and have on standard universal kosher symbol. I mean,if you
agree with say, the COR's rules, but not (U), you'd either have to
import a lot of food to meet your kosher requirements, or basically
starve to death, no?

i think that's the point though, that some people could have stricter definitions than others. but for the person with the less strict interpretation you'd be reducing the number of available kosher products if you only let the strictest interpretation govern what constitutes kosher.

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