A person I know brings to work left-over masholakh manot for his coworkers. Often the food items have already been opened and partially eaten. Although I am sure that the guy is sincere in bringing the food as masholakh manot, but at the same time I know that an underlying reason is because he does not want to waste food. Assuming his intent was to fulfill the mitzvah, does he actually do so in the above scenario? Just to clarify, the guy will NEVER bring to work masholakh manot that he purchased for his coworkers.

EDIT: Does masholakh manot have to be purchased by the giver, or can the giver pass along food items given to them, a/k/a, "regifting".

  • 2
    Is he bringing this on Purim or the next day?
    – Double AA
    Mar 6, 2015 at 4:34
  • @DoubleAA. Thank you for responding. He typically brings it in on Purim or the first day after the holiday that he is in the office. I can clarify tomorrow as I was not at work today. AA, are you suggesting that if it was delievered after Purim, the food is just "left overs" and can't fufill the mitzvah?
    – JJLL
    Mar 6, 2015 at 5:07
  • 5
    If he gives it the next day, then he definitely has not fulfilled his obligation of Masholakh Manot through that, as the obligation only exists on Purim day itself. Mar 6, 2015 at 5:57
  • Note that since it is brought for the office as a whole and not given to individuals (based on the way you phrased the question) then it would also not be mishloach manos. Similarly if the coworkers are not Jewish. Mar 6, 2015 at 13:33
  • @sabbahillel Why must it be given to individuals? Can you not give Mishloach Manot to the family next door? You have to choose which member of the family owns it?
    – Double AA
    Mar 8, 2015 at 17:04

1 Answer 1


Esther 9:22 says

מִשְׁלֹחַ מָנוֹת אִישׁ לְרֵעֵהוּ

Meaning that the mitzvah is to give at least 2 manot to another individual friend. Also, the mitzvah exists only on the day of Purim itself.

Shulchan Aruch Orach Chayim 695:4

One must send to his fellow two portions of meat, or foodstuffs, as it says (Esther 9:19) "And send portions, man to his fellow." Two portions to one man [is the obligation]. Rama: And some send the portions during the day and not at night (from the Rosh, first chapter of [Bavli] Megilla)

Your description seems to miss both of these obligations.

  • 3
    Sourcing this interpretation of the verse (especially from an halachic source) would improve your answer vastly.
    – msh210
    Mar 8, 2015 at 3:20
  • I see no evidence from your quote that two portions to be shared by two people would not fulfill the obligation as well. בכלל מאתים מנה (lit. "one hundred is included in two hundred") as they say
    – Double AA
    Mar 8, 2015 at 17:03
  • @DoubleAA - I'm not following the quote you are using. It seems pretty obvious to me from my qourcethat it says "one man".
    – DanF
    Mar 8, 2015 at 17:06
  • @DanF It does say one man. It also says two portions. If I give three portions then it's no good? That's quite the chumra, IMO.
    – Double AA
    Mar 8, 2015 at 17:06
  • @DoubleAA - The scenario described sounds similar to the "communal basket". I.e. - it does not seem as if he has designated one specific person. He is giving it to the "general public", so this is no "one man". If he has done this separately on Purim, anyway, then this basket the next day is supplemental and nothing to do with the mitzvah. Also, I infer by saying "left-over mishloach manot" to mean that he gave already to others and others gave him. That's what "left-over" means. Technically it's not even "mishloach manot" in terms of any mitzvah. It was done, already. I've voted to close also
    – DanF
    Mar 8, 2015 at 17:12

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