By Rabbi Sholem Fishbane
Kashrus Administrator of the Chicago Rabbinical Council
cRc Pesach Fair: On Sunday, April 10th, from 2 PM to 8 PM, the cRc will be presenting a Pesach Fair at Hebrew Theological College (Skokie Yeshiva) with several booths to help the community prepare for Pesach, including a Romaine lettuce checking demonstration, knife sharpening, hagalas kaylim, and a sofer, among others.
Kosher for Pesach? There’s an App for that! An update is now available for the iPhone App which includes product lists for Pesach 2011. Users who already own the earlier version will be prompted to download the update automatically from the App Store. The free App is available for download at http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/crc-kosher/id397991421?mt=8 The Pesach lists are now also available as Palm WebOs. (Droid and Blackberry are not available at this time.)
To view a video of the proper way to check romaine lettuce for insects and the proper way to kasher metal pots, cups, silverware, etc. please see our special Pesach videos section on our website: http://www.crcweb.org/videos.php
Kurson Kosher Egg Matza (Mexico) is certified as Kosher for Passover by the Orthodox Union; however, the label should state “According to Ashkenazi practice, egg matza may only be used for the aged and sick”.
Coca Cola cans are not being OU certified for Pesach this year; however, 2-liter bottles of Regular and Diet Coke that are certified for Passover under the OU will bear yellow caps.
Joyva products are normally under the supervision of the Kof-K during the year; however, the Kof-K DOES NOT supervise any Joyva products for Passover, because they may contain kitniot. These products are acceptable after Pesach.
The following aerosol deodorants were found to be free of denatured alcohol and are therefore recommended by the cRc for Pesach: Arrid (XX or Extra Dry varieties); Right Guard, 3D Odor Defense (Powder Dry or Fresh varieties) [Sport Original is not recommended]; Soft & Dri (Soft Scent); Sure (Powder Fresh, Regular, or Unscented varieties)
The cRc allows all fresh, raw, pre-washed bagged Iceberg lettuce, and other non-kitniyos vegetables, such as whole carrots (regular and baby), shredded and sliced carrots, shredded cabbage, and broccoli slaw for Pesach, provided that they be purchased before Pesach.
The Star K recommends that the Fresh Express salads must have the Star-KP (Passover) stamp on the bag. Dole vegetable and fruit products and River Ranch (store brands) prepackaged salads with a Star-K are usable for Passover without the P.
As a result of a recent investigation, the Star-K found it possible that quinoa’s kosher for Passover status is compromised when it grows or is processed in the proximity of certain crops. Therefore, quinoa will only be accepted with reliable Kosher for Passover supervision. The cRc approves the use of whole grain quinoa for Pesach on the following conditions: 1) The quinoa is imported exclusively from Bolivia and packed by companies that pack whole grain quinoa exclusively. While there may be others Ancient Harvest, Trader Joe’s, and Sugat (a brand of quinoa sold in Israel) are brands that only import quinoa from Bolivia and only pack whole grain quinoa. 2) The quinoa must be purchased and carefully inspected by hand before Pesach. This is done by spreading one layer of quinoa at a time on a board or plate and checked to be sure that there are no other grains or foreign matter mixed in with the quinoa. This does not apply to quinoa flour, pasta, or any other version of quinoa which are not permitted on Pesach.
Jaffa Gold Apple Nectar and Primor Orange Nectar were found in South African stores with OU-P stickers. The Orthodox Union does not certify these products for Passover. The OU does not sanction any use of generic OU-P stickers.
King Star Foods Chicken Flavor Soup (Tavlinei Shemesh, ISRAEL) bears an unauthorized OU-P sticker. This product is not certified for Passover by the Orthodox Union. Product is being recalled from the market place.
All Tate & Lyle Granulated and Caster Sugar, wherever purchased, bears the KLBD-P logo and is Kosher for Pesach l’Mehadrin.
All Streit’s products made in the United States and Canada are under Kof-K supervision, regardless of whether the Kof-K symbol appears on the package.
24 Hour Thermogenics Choco Lettes, Health Management Care a.k.a. Diet Center bears an unauthorized OU-P mark. This product is not certified by the Orthodox Union, and is not kosher for Passover. Corrective measures are being implemented.
The Lakewood Matzoh Factory has Gluten Free Oat Hand and Machine Matzoh and Matzoh Meal; Organic Spelt Hand and Machine Matzoh; Shmora Wheat Matzoh; and Whole Wheat Matzoh – Hand Made and Machine. They can be reached at www.lakewoodmatzoh.com or 732-364-8757. The last day to place your order for Passover delivery is Monday, April 11th. Shipping of Matzoh will begin the week of March 27th.
Real Lemon and Real Lime brand juice concentrate is Kosher for Pesach even without the “P” on the label. This only applies to this brand.
The OU has approved a popular baby food for Pesach. Gerber 2nd Food 4oz. jars of carrots and squash are chometz free. They also have green beans and peas which are also permissible but are obviously kitniyos, and special care is needed with dishes. Both are permissible with only the OU. The “P” is not required.
The following are some brands of raisins that do not require special Pesach certification. The OU alone is sufficient: Del Monte – natural and golden; Dole; Fisher Nut; Great Value; Jewel; Kroger; Market Basket; Member’s Mark; Setton; Trader Joe’s (also Trader Joe’s brand Bing cherries, fancy dried nectarines, and fancy dried pears).
All Pillar Rock Salmon (with only salt and water added) in both cans and pouches is acceptable for Pesach with only the OU on the label. The “P” is not needed.
PediaSure nutritional drinks are recommended for Pesach (when bearing the OU) for those consumers who are allowed to have kitniyos.
A new Slurpee flavor is now in stores, Blueberry Splash. It is kosher dairy-cholov stam. Citrus Blast, the newest flavor from Pepsi, is kosher in both regular and diet versions.
New Hope Product: Ultimate Hot Chocolate (New Hope Mills Mfg. Inc, Auburn NY) with an OU label is certified by the Orthodox Union but should be labeled OU-D, because it contains a component made on dairy equipment.
Regency of Boro Park Assisted Living 5110 19th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY is no longer under Tartikov kosher supervision and is now under the supervision of the Vaad Hakashrus of Rabbi Usher Eckstein. This includes all cooked or baked and prepared food. All vegetables are insect-free.
New Square Kashrus Council has announced that all types of Cascade Action Pacs dishwasher detergent should not be used, as the gel packet containing the soap is made out of non-kosher materials, placing them in the category of nevayla/treifa. All Cascade Action Pacs, no matter when they were purchased, should be discarded.
Please be advised that Haifa Smoked Fish (distributed by D & M Smoked Fish, Jamaica, NY) bears an unauthorized CRC (Hisachdus) symbol on the label. These products are NOT certified by the CRC certification. Corrective measures are being taken.
Due to worm infestation, the Vaad of Flatbush and the Star-K do not recommend whole sardines from Portugal, Norway, Scotland, or Poland, even when bearing a reliable kosher certification. The skinless, boneless variety has not been found to have worms and is acceptable with reliable kosher certification. Whole sardines from Morocco and Philippines do not have an infestation issue.
The outer box of Yoyo Mania Bubble Gum Nuggets (Kidsmania Inc., Santa Fe Springs, CA) mistakenly displays the OU symbol. This product is not certified by the Orthodox Union, and the company is withdrawing this product for relabeling.
Due to an equipment malfunction the pita breads manufactured by Al Khayam Bakery are not to be considered pas yisroel until after April 15, 2011.
Boxes of Post Fruity Pebbles and Post Cocoa Pebbles contain a promotional Fruity Pebble or Cocoa Pebble Treats Bar. These are non-kosher items. It is clearly indicated on the self-contained bar that it is not kosher. This bar is double-wrapped and does not come in contact with kosher-certified Fruity Pebbles or Cocoa Pebbles.
Safcol Premium Atlantic Salmon Snack Pack bears an unauthorized OU. Consumers who see this product in the market should please contact the OU.
All Fine Foods Bulgarian Sheep’s Cheese in Brine bears an unauthorized OU and is not kosher. This product is being sold in Los Angeles.
Walles Institute (Oak Brook, IL) is distributing brochures advertising that their Vegetarian Nuggets are kosher certified by OK Kosher Certification. Please be advised that this product is not certified by OK Kosher Certification.
The Sunbeam and Nature’s Own Breads are once again acceptable with the numbers 118 before the expiration date with or without the letters HKA ink jetted next to the expiration date.
OK Kosher Certification no longer certifies Your Sweet Expressions, Brooklyn, NY.
Viapia Olive Oil Italian Tradition (distributed by B.M.A. USA, Inc., Glendale, CA) bears an unauthorized OK symbol on the label. These products are not certified by OK Kosher Certification. Corrective measures are being taken.
Many of the Kosher Miami certified establishments have been providing yoshon flour in their products; however, recently there has been a shortage of yoshon flour in Miami. This will affect the ability of the establishments to continue to provide yoshon products until Pesach. We are therefore alerting the public to inquire at the establishment regarding the yoshon status of the products before making their purchase. There will be signs posted in those particular establishments that are out of yoshon flour.
Archer Farms High Protein Orange Fruit Smoothie and Archer Farms High Protein Mixed Berries Fruit Smoothie, (Target, Minneapolis, MN) are OU certified and contain dairy ingredients as listed on the ingredient panel; however the dairy designation has been inadvertently omitted. Future packaging will be revised.
Weight Watchers® Cappuccino Cream Melts bears an unauthorized Star-K and is presently not certified. Weight Watchers is currently working to rectify this, and proper packaging is pending. Weight Watchers Blackberry, Cherry, and Strawberry Fruities are kosher pareve and certified by the Star K when bearing the Star-K.
General Mills has discontinued OU-D kosher certification from all retail and foodservice sizes of Bugles Original products due to operational changes at the production sites. The OU-D symbol has been removed from packaging. Consumers are likely to see some Bugles Original packages with the OU-D symbol and some without as the transition occurs.
The following Tootsie Roll Industries, Inc. products are newly certified as kosher: Junior Mints, Blow Pops, Tootsie Roll Pops, Caramel Apple Pops, Charms, Sugar Daddy, and Sugar Babies. These products must bear the OU symbol to be kosher, and new packaging bearing the OU symbol will be distributed nationwide beginning in the next few months. Tootsie Rolls, Tootsie Fruit Rolls, and Frooties are kosher DAIRY even without the OU-D symbol. Dots are Kosher Pareve even without the OU symbol.
Nestlé The Skinny Cow Vanilla Sandwiches were labeled incorrectly with a COR “DE”. This product is DAIRY. Corrective measures have been taken.
Oranges from Israel have been seen in Costco. One is required to separate Trumah and Ma’aser from these fruits. (Kashrut.com reports that stores in the US are now required to list the country of origin of produce. When in doubt, ask to see the original box that the produce came in.)
Downtown Kebab is not under Kosher Miami supervision and never was. Corrective measures are being taken.
Harmony Gummy Bears and Gummy Worms, Diamond Foods is not OU certified. A small quantity of these products has been distributed with an OU symbol on the outer box. The boxes are being re-labeled.
Richfood White Cranberry Strawberry Juice Cocktail mistakenly bears an unauthorized OU and is not kosher. Consumers who see these products with an OU, should
Emerald Cove Green Nori Flakes (Great Eastern Sun, Asheville, NC), 2.8 oz. bags, with a “best by” date of 111612, were mistakenly labeled with the
Real New York “Kosher Depot” Bialys – frozen are no longer certified by OK Kosher Certification. Product prepared before December 9, 2010 bearing the OK symbol is still certified.
Sour Brite Gummy Worms from Superior Nut and Candy (Chicago, IL), mistakenly bears a cRc on the label. The product is not kosher and is being removed from circulation.
Opal S. Y. International is distributing Heirloom Farms Pomegranate Juice (and possibly other products) bearing an unauthorized OK symbol on the label. These products are not certified by OK Kosher Certification. Corrective measures are being taken.
PureVia sugar substitute packets that are certified OU-D are currently being served at a major Hilton Hotel in the tri-state area (and in other facilities). This hotel does a lot of business with kosher caterers, and all mashgichim and consumers should be aware of this and check all sugar and sugar substitute packets on all catering jobs. The dairy product is called PureVia (a Stevia extract product) and comes in a green and white packet. Although the company has reformulated their product and it is now pareve, packets with OU-D are in fact dairy.
Due to Kashrus Violations, the CRC (Hisachdus) has removed their Supervision from Kosher Pizza & Bagel’s 4502 16th Ave, Brooklyn, NY.
Ideal Suillus Luteus Mushrooms (in jar), Mixed Mushrooms (in jar) and Champignon Mushrooms (in jar) (Prime Foods USA LLC, Philadelphia, PA) bear a non-authorized OU, and do not meet OU kosher standards. Consumers who see this product should please call 212-613-8344.
Breads produced by Voila Bakery (65 Porter Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11237) bear the OK-D symbol on the boxes. These breads are not certified. OK Kosher Certification does not certify any Viola breads except for the brioche roll, which is OK dairy. Kashrut.com reports that most of their cakes are certified OK-D.
SPLENDA® Flavors for Coffee – Mocha (McNeil Nutritionals, Fort Washington, PA) erroneously bears the OU-Pareve symbol although it contains a dairy ingredient. All future cartons will be printed with the correct OU-D designation.
Concord Bakery Chocolate Filled Fingers bearing the date code beginning with 11017 contain a non-kosher ingredient. This product is not COR kosher and should not be used. Corrective measures have been taken to ensure that future production of this item is kosher.
Better Made Corn Pops – 8 ounce (available in OH and MI) is labeled with an OU but contains non-certified ingredients. It is being recalled, and corrective measures are being implemented.
Effective April 1, 2011, the STAR-K will no longer be the certifying agency for Hoffman & Co / Lewis Caterers, Baltimore, MD.
Kashrus Updates from Israel:
The Eida Chareidit announces it no longer gives a hechsher to the Shirat HaYam Fish Company, located in the Atarot Industrial Park in northern Jerusalem. Any packages of Shirat HaYam products that do not have an Eida hologram are NOT under the Eida’s hechsher, even if the Eida logo is displayed.
Joy Restaurant (02-563 0033), 24 Emek Refaim Street, in Jerusalem’s German Colony neighborhood is now under the mehadrin supervision of OU-Israel. It is a meat restaurant.
The Eida Chareidit warns that the heads of salmon should not be used, even after being cleaned and checked, since they are simply too infested. This new directive has been distributed to fish stores with an Eida Chareidit hechsher.