2 Iyar 5772
April 24, 2012
Based on comments posted to the first of this series and the many emails I received, I wish to once again stress that the content included below is from the Badatz Eida Chareidit, not JKN.
The information represents policy/opinion of the Badatz Eida Chareidit rabbi and it may or may not be in line with your practice. If you have Halachic questions I urge you to consult with your rabbi. One should not seek halachic responses from this website.
My goal is to familiarize you with Eida operating procedure to provide you with a baseline for comparison. The Eida is transparent and publishes its standards. This permits you to make inquiries regarding the policy of other hechsherim.
In addition, there are many issues mentioned that many readers are unfamiliar with and increasing our kashrut awareness will facilitate our decision-making regarding hechsherim and kashrut practices in general.
In some cases, a food item is listed just to share with you some of the concerns of the kosher supervising agency, in this case the Badatz Eida Chareidit. Too often many of us still naively say “what can be wrong with this?”
And finally, the food production industry today is massive and products contain ingredients manufactured around the world. There is almost nothing being sold without visible or invisible additives and therefore, everything requires kosher supervision from a reliable hashgacha. Just which hashgacha you deem “reliable” is your decision, perhaps best made in consultation with a rabbi that is in the kosher loop. Not all rabbonim have this knowledge.
- Tuna Fish: There are many fish that are called “tuna”, some being non-kosher.
In addition, in most cases, proteins derived from chalav akum may be added.
Large tunas are used in badatz factories and they arrive whole, so they are easily identified.
There is no fear of any non-kosher fish being mixed into the batch or that they were held in a brine solution with any non-kosher fish.
The entire production process is carried out in the presence of mashgichim.
The supervision includes the cooking process. The cooking process is started by a shomer Shabbos Jew.
- Frozen Fish: If frozen fish are imported with skins attached, one must verify the badatz logo appears on the packaging. If frozen fish are without skins attached, then one must find a badatz logo in addition to a badatz hologram on the packaging.
- Fish (Salads, salted, smoked): There are different fish that are picked, including matyas in wine or tartar, and the latter may also be a wine derivative.
Some fish (פיטלינג) are also smoked with meat.
Of late, there are many non-kosher fish being sold in the marketplace and the consumer must be very alert.
There are also ground fish being imported under the name ‘gefilte fish’. They are used in factories and hotels and they present the fear of Torah prohibitions.
- Wine/Grape Juice: All types certified by the badatz are ‘Borei Pri HaGafen’ l’chatchila. Those who are stringent and seek 100% pure grape juice should seek out labels marked “100% grape juice”.
All bottles used are new bottles even if they are not marked ב”ח.
- Leafy Greens: Such products are only under the badatz’s hashgacha if the label states “approved by Badatz Eida Chareidit providing the following instructions are followed. Kashrus instructions: one must separate each leaf and soak it in soapy water for 3 minutes and then wash under a stream of water”.
IMPORTANT: Products from the same companies without the paragraph in quotations above are not monitored by the badatz and not under its supervision.
Regular leafy greens are infested and require expertise inspection and cleaning and therefore, a G-d fearing person should not use them at all.
- Pots/Vessels: Only pots stating “kashered by hagala by the Badatz” are certified by the Eida Chareidit.
All new aluminum and stainless steel vessels should be taken for hagala before using due to fears they were smeared with non kosher oil at the end of production. This holds true of silver cups as well as well as other silver vessels since they too may have been smeared with non-kosher oil and require hagala. (Hagala = dipping the vessel into rapidly boiling water).
If a vessel requires both hagala and toiveling, then the hagala should be performed first.
In accordance with the ruling of the Minchat Yitzchak ZT”L and the Shevet Halevy HaGaon HaRav Shmuel Halevy Wosner Shlita, if the store owner toivels a vessel before it is purchased, the toiveling is not valid.
Duralex and Pyrex vessels are manufactured abroad and therefore require toiveling.
The only factory which manufactures bottles in Israel operates on Shabbos. The badatz has tried on numerous occasions to persuade the factory to cease the Shabbat desecration, albeit without success. Therefore, the badatz does its utmost to ensure that factories under badatz supervision do not use those bottles and whenever possible, bottles are imported from abroad.
If one wishes to use bottles and jar for storage after they are emptied, they should be toiveled. Before immersing them in the water the labels and stickers must be removed.
There are vessels and eating utensils manufactured abroad but bearing the name of a local company. These require hagala and toiveling as well so one must check to ascertain the place of manufacture.
END of part 2