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Are Starburst Fruit Chews kosher? This website below clearly has an OU on the right side. However, Gelatin appears on the ingredient list, and the oukosher.org website doesn't have any reference to Starburst, as far as I can tell.

https://www.marsfoodservices.com/products-brands/candy/starburst.aspx

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    welcome back :) – Double AA Mar 18 '15 at 15:04
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    Thanks. Returning bc it's a matter of vital importance, of course. – ArghMo Mar 18 '15 at 15:07
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    The only thing I found on OU is an old alert related to the variety pack. See oukosher.org/kosher-alerts/skittles-starburst-variety-pack. Best bet is to call OU directly. If you get an answer, please post. – DanF Mar 18 '15 at 16:33
  • Another point to consider is that the OU only appears next to one of the products. This may mean that the others are not kosher. Do you see an OU on the actual product in the store? – sabbahillel Mar 18 '15 at 21:06
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    I received a package of individually wrapped candies. No OU on the individual wrappers. – ArghMo Mar 23 '15 at 1:30
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Although the website has an OU printed there, if you click in to the nutritional information it says that it is not Kosher.

In addition, here is a reproduction of an e-mail claimed to be from the company saying that the gelatin in the product is beef. It is not economically feasible to use Kosher beef to make commercial gelatin, and the OU does not regard gelatin derived from non-Kosher animals as Kosher.

So it would seem that the reasonable conclusion is that it is not Kosher according to the OU, and the OU should be contacted about the misplacement of their symbol on the website you linked.

  • Thanks. Agreed - that will probably be the conclusion. I emailed OUkosher yesterday, so I'll be sure to post the reply. – ArghMo Mar 19 '15 at 19:06
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Here's the reply I received from the OU. The Webbe Rebee didn't say anything about the OU appearing on the Starburst website.

*Thank you for contacting the OU.

We do not currently certify any Starburst candy.

Please do not hesitate to contact us again should you have any further questions.

Sincerely,

The Web(be) Rebbe Orthodox Union Kashruth Division*

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    Thanks for reporting back. I sent the following note to Mars and will post here if I get a reply: Your product page for Starburst Fruit Chews (marsfoodservices.com/products-brands/candy/starburst.aspx) displays the "O-U" symbol of the Orthodox Union with rollover text of "Kosher," but someone who contacted the Orthodox Union (judaism.stackexchange.com/a/56694/2) learned that "We do not currently certify any Starburst candy." As such, the use of this symbol on the product page probably constitutes false advertising. I recommend that you remove it. – Isaac Moses Mar 23 '15 at 13:06
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    @IsaacMoses Looks like it was removed? – Double AA Apr 24 '15 at 2:39
  • @DoubleAA indeed, it has. I didn't get any other response from them, but I'm glad of this outcome. – Isaac Moses Apr 24 '15 at 2:51
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I spoke to Wrigley's which actually makes Starburst and consumer info lady said "it's not kosher but every thing in it is kosher"

I laughed inside

My next obvious question was what does she know about the gelatin?

Her answer was "it's beef derived "

So not kosher but actully treif big time

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    Why is beef derived gelatin "treif big time"? – Double AA Apr 24 '15 at 2:38
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Beef derived gelatin is still beef, so I think the gelatin would have to be derived from kosher beef, which is not likely what Starburst would pay for.

  • Plus they'd have to mark it "fleishig" so people can wait 6 hours after eating a fruit chew. – Double AA Oct 22 '15 at 15:15
  • @DoubleAA, I'm pretty sure the OU regards beef derived gelatin as pareve. They require the material to be Kosher, but the resultant product they do not regard as fleishig. – Yishai Sep 13 '16 at 18:37
  • @Yishai Oh sure, but I'm just speaking accd to the OP's logic. Other people think it's not only pareve but kosher even from non-kosher beef. The OP though can't fathom its changing halakhic status at all. – Double AA Sep 14 '16 at 1:30

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