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.

  • 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
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    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.


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.


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    Though even he says some things need hechshers – Double AA Feb 27 '13 at 22:56
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    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
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    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
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    @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
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    @Kordovero On the basis of asking your rabbi if he holds like him. That is the only way most Jews should be making halachic decisions anyway. – Double AA Jul 31 '15 at 17:45

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