Mi Yodeya is a question and answer site for those who base their lives on Jewish law and tradition and anyone interested in learning more. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Do objects used in food preparation and foods that have no or little chance of being not kosher really need a hechsher?

Please cite sources, if you can.

share|improve this question
I don't understand your question. No not everything needs a hechsher. Some things do some things don't. Are you looking for a complete list? – Double AA Feb 27 '13 at 21:03
@DoubleAA, I think he's looking for a yes or no answer with an explanation, not a list. – Seth J Feb 27 '13 at 21:05
@SethJ So if I provide one example of a food that doesn't need a hechsher and one example of a food that does need a hechsher that will completely and satisfactorily answer the question? – Double AA Feb 27 '13 at 21:05
By the way, user2449, welcome to Mi Yodeya. I hope you enjoy the site. Please consider registering your account, which will give you access to more of the site's features. You might also think about adopting a new user name, unless you're particularly fond of the number 2449! :) – Seth J Feb 27 '13 at 21:25

Here is one agency's list of what doesn't need a hechsher http://www.star-k.org/cons-appr-no-need.htm

this is one answer about why some apparently hechsher free items might need a hechsher http://www.askmoses.com/en/article/144,2095417/Why-do-supervision-agencies-supervise-products-that-do-not-need-a-hechsher.html

this is about things that get into unsupervised food that don't appear on ingredients labels http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/529218/jewish/Do-packaged-frozen-vegetables-require-kosher-certification.htm

and this article also deals with actual problematic ingredients http://www.aish.com/jl/m/mm/Isnt_Water_Kosher.html

this one discusses relying on ingredients lists http://www.ok.org/Content.asp?ID=116

I know that the OU put out an article about processing and the mashgiach's familiarity with more than just superficial ingredients but I can't find it.

share|improve this answer

Rabbi Yitzchak Abadi, formerly a posek in Lakewood, and currently a Rosh Kollel in Jerusalem, as well as founder of http://www.kashrut.org/. He is of the opinion that Jews should continue in the ways of the Tanaiim in figuring out for themselves whether a food product is kosher or not. Hechsherim are mostly superfluous; it's sufficient to read the ingredients intelligently. He uses his authority to bravely declare that, for example, one may eat a tuna sandwich at any Subway chain, whether under kosher supervision or not, if one follows some simple guidelines. See here, here, and here. In fact, do yourself a favor and browse this website a bit. It's an eye opening experience for most frum Jews whose minds have been cluttered by too many kashruth organizations' acronyms.


share|improve this answer
Though even he says some things need hechshers – Double AA Feb 27 '13 at 22:56
Isn't he basically the only Orthodox rabbi who holds this way? Don't all other poskim rule that all processed foods need a hechsher? On what basis could one choose to hold by the one rabbi who goes against the virtual unanimity of all other rabbis? – Kordovero Feb 28 '13 at 15:07
He's known to paskin fairly unconventionally (leniently), so caveat emptor. – Shmuel Brin Aug 20 '13 at 16:36
This site's policy isn't to Pasken Halacha Lemaaseh. It's to bring opinions and sources regardless of whether we agree or not and that's exactly what I did. – Hacham Gabriel Aug 21 '13 at 1:35
@Shmuel I disagree. Sometimes he is more strict and sometimes he is more lenient. Any posek who does not have that quality is not trustworthy IMO. – Double AA Aug 21 '13 at 4:28

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.