BenHaim Winery (Ramat HaSharon)

12 Tishrei 5774
September 16, 2013

The following is from Chief Rabbinate of Israel Kashrus Update 001/5774

Yes, update was published a few days ago so why the delay in publishing this particular item you may ask?

The alert states:
The Ben Haim Winery in Ramat HaSharon continues to advertise itself as “kosher mehadrin” but over recent years, the winery does not have a hashgacha from the local rabbinate.

I wanted to know if the alert above is simply a violation of the law by advertising as kosher without the local rabbinate hashgacha, or perhaps, a true kosher fraud. I went to the company website and under “kashrut”  it says (READ CAREFULLY):

“All the wines of the winery from vintage 2001 are kosher under the inspection of the Chief Rabbi and the head of the Religious Rabbinic Court of Rishon-Lezion City, Rabbi Yossef Azran, As well as under inspection of the International O.K kashrut committee.”

For me it says that the wine from 2001 ONLY is under supervision. Hence, the statement could be true but most readers would not catch this and assume there is kashrus today (My opinion). Anyway, I decided to contact OK Kosher to ascertain if that hechsher is valid.

I emailed OK Israel but did not receive a response. I then emailed OK USA and was told “the item does not appear in our database. Please contact OK Israel”.

I then explained in a follow-up email to the US office that I already contacted OK Israel and did not receive a response, and that is why I am turning to the US office. I was given two email addresses to contact in Israel.

I then wrote to Israel a second time, to both email addresses, and now, a few days later, taking into account the yomim tovim and realizing people are not in the office on a regular schedule, but still, no response.

Hence I am publishing this item and the issue of the OK supervision is unresolved in my mind.



  • Gershon Ferency
    September 16, 2013 - 09:42 | Permalink

    Here is the phone number for the head Rav Mashgiach for wineries.
    OK Rav Shmuel Eidelman 0528101030


  • Yonatan Ben-Zev
    September 16, 2013 - 12:24 | Permalink

    It seems their website is not updated. I checked on the Beit Yosef website and they hold their hechsher but apparently not any local Rabbanut hechsher contrary to the law.

  • Elie Benhaim
    September 16, 2013 - 16:58 | Permalink

    Dear Yonatan Ben Zev
    your above statement is unfounded , negligent, false, and harmfull to winery without no reasons . I am asking you to give me your full name and address , in aim to sue you in court for this faulse report . I hope you are collecting enough donnations for paying the idemnities.

    To whom its concern , please note that all the Benhaim wines made from 2001 up to days are KOSHER LE MEHADRIN ‘ and has been under the inspection of the very known and respected Rabinical Kosher Institudes in Israel , including the formal representatives of the Chief rabinat Kashrut in Israel .
    Each bottle include all the details and specifications about each one of the cashrut certificates given , the name and signature of each one of the Raby in charge .

    The negligent and or layer wiriter of the above faulse information is invited to publish his full name and address , so we can sue him in court according the law .

    Any way , if an immediate Denial and suitable Apology will not be made by the authorised manager or owner of this publication – the winery will open the legal proceeding as due .

    Elie Benhaim , ADV
    on behalf of the Benhaim Winery LTD

  • LOL
    September 16, 2013 - 17:49 | Permalink

    Elie! you crack me up!
    get a life, this is a blog dedicated to one man’s views on kashrut.

    if you’re so worried about the public reading here, instead of playing lawyer, just provide the public with WHICH rabbinate(s) and/or organization(s) certify the BenHaim winery. quit the ‘under the inspection of the very known and respected Rabinical Kosher Institudes’ nonsense.

    Yechiel! you surprised me today!
    ive now read 3 blog posts about this company, yet you have only contacted 3rd party kashrut organizations.
    i’m amazed that you have not spoken to a representative form the winery itself to ask directly which kashrut certifications they have (ask Elie :-P ), nor have you written that you contacted the local rabbinate of ramat hasharon, the first and bare minimum certification that would be required.
    i would think that these would have been your first inquiries.

  • September 16, 2013 - 18:38 | Permalink

    Actually, I first turned to the company (BenHaim) website and it makes the claims which have since been proven untrue. That is to say the Chief Rabbinate denies local rabbinic supervision and the OK stated the claim is untrue. Hence, the company was presenting a picture that was not the case. This prompted me to begin trying to find out if there was supervision, and in this case I was successful.

    I believe the first obligation is to the consumer, to report that kashrus claims that are being made by a firm are not true, and this was verified first hand with the hashgchot involved, not “third party” as you say.

    Thanks for taking the time to write. Much appreciated

  • LOL
    September 16, 2013 - 18:57 | Permalink

    Thank you Yechiel for your continued vigilance and for bringing these matters to our attention.

    what i still can’t wrap my head around is that you haven’t spoken to anyone at the winery. for all we know their english website is old and not up to date. their hebrew site takes you to their facebook page which seems up to date.

    i think JKN would get to the bottom of this much faster if it spoke to the winery (ELIE!) directly.

  • Comments are closed.