25

I had an email correspondence with Rabbi Saffra several years ago about the cheese question. His response was very clearly that he did not hold cheese produced with microbial media to be cheese in the traditional understanding, since microbial coagulant did not exist at the time of the Shulchan Aruch. He said it is a different product, so the gezerah was not ...


19

Rather than guessing, read it directly from the source. Some have also suggested that a natural product, derived from the Cannabis plant, for a life-threatening condition, does not require certification. This is factually incorrect. The OU certified product comes in three forms: pills, oils and vapor. While the cannabis plant is inherently ...


17

Every Kosher Agency has its own standards that it adheres to. It has its leniencies that it follows, as well as stringencies. If you don't agree with those leniences, then you won't trust that hechsher. There are many things that must be taken into account. Some examples: the Kashering process between non-kosher and kosher products run on the same line. ...


16

As one who has a brother in the bakery business who has 4 certifications on his products I dispute this claim. My brother has 4 different certifications in order to appeal to different communities. There are those that only eat specific certifications and will not eat your product unless it is certified by a Rabbi that they feel comfortable with. (Correct: ...


13

From the O-U website: It is assumed that instant coffee does not require a hechsher, since coffee plants process just that and nothing else. Although there are forms of flavored instant coffees, the flavors are added at ambient temperatures after the drying process. Nevertheless, it is good and prudent practice to purchase instant coffee with a hechsher. ...


13

Based on Footnote 3 of Halachically Speaking Volume 5 Issue 12 (which seems to also be the source of the text in the question): If Mister Jones has two restaurants, one kosher one not-kosher, and I certify the kosher one, I occasionally go into the non-kosher restaurant to make sure that nothing there claims to be certified by me. I never would have ...


12

In the words of the esteemed sage Jerry Garcia: Constantly choosing the lesser of two evils is still choosing evil. I'd advise the individual to get out of the situation as best as he can. There's a similar legend has it regarding Ridbaz, who was a rabbi in Chicago in the early 1900s. He found himself "accidentally" locked into a freezer when inspecting ...


12

I hope this goes some way in answering your question: When I used to live in New York, I had never before seen such a huge proliferation of Kashrut organisations. I asked different Rabbonim, who all "held by" different hashgachot. Ultimately, I decided to personally check out the few places with hechsherim I had not been advised about. I went into a Crumbs ...


12

This answer has been marked "community wiki," which means that it's open to all1 to edit. Please do! Please preserve the alphabetical order of the list. If you do not see something on the list, consider that it may be alphabetized by the product name or the brand name. Please include the date at which you obtained your information. Outdated information (...


11

The Gemara (Bab. Shabbath 21a) tells us that this practice, on some level, dates way back at least to the time of the Ḥashmonaim. the Kohanim would light the Menorah in the Beith HaMikdash using oil in sealed containers bearing an official seal that, unless tampered with, marked that the oil was pure and usable for the Menorah.


11

About ten years ago, I learned the following, specifically about Dunkin Donuts (DD), from Rabbi Gershon Segal, a local rabbi who does local supervision, including of local DD branches, on behalf of local and national kashrut agencies. This is from my memory of what he said verbally back then, so contemporary reality in various locations may vary. However, I ...


11

These eggs are cooked by boilers that run constantly. The OU ensures that when the boiler needs to be restarted, it is done with a Mashgiach. Source: I heard it from a Rabbi who asked the OU and got that answer. Of course we may not be talking about the same company, but the point being that the OU requires the Bishul Yisroel and makes arrangements for it. ...


11

The Atlanta Kashrus Agency does not recommend the KORC. The AKC does not recommend the KORC certification. Lettuce products with this certification have been found to have have insects and require additional washing and checking.


10

I think the issue is not so much ease of verification as much as it is ease of forgery. It's a lot easier for a restaurant to lie and state on a sign that it is Kosher than it is for them to forge a certificate from a certifying agency and also have someone at the phone ready to lie and give false answers should someone call the number printed on the ...


10

The OU has (at least) two specific problems with Triangle-K: 1- While halakhah has no minimum bound (shiur) for how often an establishment must be spot-checked (yotzei venichnas = someone who goes and comes), Triangle-K does so far less often than does the OU. The OU had multiple incidents where staff made it clear that until the OU took over inspection, ...


10

Apparently, some Dannon yogurts (with K) and Yoplait yogurts (with KD) are under the supervision of Rabbi David Sheinkopf and Rabbi Barnett Hasden, respectively. (Regarding Rabbi Hasden's hashgacha, see this related question). I do not know whether either of those rabbis provide supervision with kashrus standards that are widely considered acceptable. (...


10

According to the CRC-Chicago it needs a Hashgacha Does the juice or flavor for electronic cigarettes pose kashrus issues? Yes. Electronic cigarettes convert a specially formulated liquid into a vapor which the person inhales in a manner that mimics the way one inhales from a traditional cigarette. The liquid (which is sometimes called “juice”...


10

Considering the opacity around the acceptability of different kashruth certification organizations in America, I don't think many people will be able to accurately answer this question. That being said, KORC appears on neither the cRc nor KosherQuest (Rabbi Eidlitz, based in California) lists of reliable hashgachot (although they of course have disclaimers ...


10

There are two concerns here: chanufa, which means telling a sinner that you approve of their sinful action; and mesayea / lifnei iver, being involved in (or enabling) someone else's sin. For a rabbi to officiate at a wedding prohibited by halacha would be an issue of chanufa, as he's declaring okay that which the Torah says is not. For the caterer, florist,...


10

As always, the answer is: "it's a machlokes!" Open up a Shulchan Aruch to Yoreh Deah 116:2, where it says not to mix meat and fish. The Taz's opinion is that because meat-and-fish is a health concern, we are stricter about it than normal kashrus prohibitions, therefore if you pour one ounce of fish juice into a hundred ounces of beef broth, you may not eat ...


9

"and you may correct me if I'm wrong" You are wrong. No agency is universally accepted. Period. (If you meant to ask for agencies that are widely accepted, just "not by all", then that is an entirely different question, and depends on many factors, most practically geography, as some of the other answers indicate)


9

Well, by US law, any manufacturer can put a plain K on its product. That just means "someone says it's kosher." If they put a plain K on a package of bacon, you'd have to sue them for false advertising, unless they could find someone who says bacon is kosher. As for Jewish law, as new situations come up, rabbis who are regarded as experts on Jewish law ...


9

Midina d'Gemara, shochtim do not need to be certified. In halacha, we may assume like 'rov,' and in shechita, the rule is that 'rov metzuyim etzel shechita,' that most people who claim to know how to slaughter indeed know how to and may be relied upon. See Simlah Chadasha 1:4-5. However, in the times of the Rishonim, there were many fraudsters who took ...


9

According to the CRC: Black, green, white, yellow, oolong, and jasmine tea are all inherently kosher for Pesach, but the issues of decaffeination and flavoring apply to tea in the same way that they apply to coffee. For that reason all decaffeinated tea and all flavored tea (which includes most herbal teas) should only be used on Pesach if they bear an ...


8

I found the site I was thinking of, anyone know of any others? http://www.hechshers.info/shapes/index.htm


8

There are certain foods likely to be taken from live animals and most others would not be. So for example, I'd trust that most chicken or beef available on the market is not eiver min hachai. But snow crab legs are apparently often taken from live snow crabs. So if the ben noach knows what foods are likely to be problematic, they can avoid those or devote ...


8

Hallachicly there is nothing that makes an issue out of eating the food when the item has multiple certifications, whatever the motivation or propriety of doing so (and I think Gershon Gold is spot on about the manufacturer's motivation in having them). That being said, in terms of the application of the general hashkafic point, almost any meat you are ...


8

Per CRC-Chicago All dental floss, including flavored, may be used. However, during pesach one should only use the unflavored variety.


8

Forward.com reported (2006) that plumbas were being replaced with holograms to fight fraud.


8

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 ...


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