Bug Checking

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  • #1552497

    K-cup
    Participant

    I recently read an article by an Israeli posek who said current bug checking is d’rabbanan.
    “The law goes according to the lenient opinion since it is a doubt of Rabbinical status (safek d’Rabbanan), for a person is not interested in eating the insect, but is compelled to eat it along with the food, against his will. Moreover, according to the majority of poskim, a tiny insect is batel b’shishim (nullified in sixty; that is, permissible so long as forbidden ingredients constitute no more than 1/60 of the whole) from the Torah, and it was only the Chachamim (Sages) who were stringent in declaring that a ‘briyah’ (a whole insect) is not batel (nullified) even in a thousand. Some poskim say that the Chachamim were stringent only in regards to an insect that has some importance, but if it is tiny and disgusting, even from rabbinical status, it is batel b’shishim. In addition, it’s also doubtful whether in actuality a tiny insect exists.”
    Where can I find some sources to look through on this topic. It is quite surprising as most or all kashrus organizations make it seem as a Torah issur too eat vegetables that have not been checked for bugs

    #1552597

    Joseph
    Participant

    Isn’t this similar to the machlokes about drinking New York City tap water, regarding the tiny insects that live in the water?

    #1552724

    K-cup
    Participant

    This rav says even bugs that can be visible to the naked eye, such I believe is not relevant to the new York water.

    #1552730

    DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    The bugs in NYC water are big enough to see.

    #1552739

    K-cup
    Participant

    So do most poskim hold the new York water is assur deorysa to drink unfilteredfrom the tap? I’m not familiar with the situation over there, but I was surprised that people would say lettuce and broccoli doesn’t need to be checked.

    #1552822

    jew boy2
    Participant

    Regardless of weather or not you are over on 1 to 5 deoraisa s …theres still the ‘timtum halev’ aspect….just sayin

    #1552781

    DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    I’m not sure if it’s assur mid’rabbonon or mid’Oraisa.

    #1552870

    iacisrmma
    Participant

    k-cup: no one that i know of says it is assur medeoraysa. Just the opposite. R’ Belsky Tzatzal paskened that one can drink the water without a filter.

    #1552893

    Joseph
    Participant

    DY: Then how is Rav Belaky mattir to drink unfiltered NYC tap water?

    #1552914

    K-cup
    Participant

    It seems If it’s mutar to drink from the tap in ny, either the bugs cannot be seen with the naked eye or really all vegetable are in the same category and also mutar. Or vegetables have so.ethikng else going on entirely

    #1552921

    iacisrmma
    Participant

    Rabbi Belsky permitted drinking New York City water, even though it contains copepods. He argued that since Jews have been drinking this water for over one hundred years, and no one ever noticed them, they must not be considered nirah l’einayim (visible to the the naked eye). Furthermore, since the copepods only live in the reservoirs, which have the status of mei borot (gathered water), the copepods are actually permissible to be eaten. [Note: In deference to the opinion of other posekim, the OU requires filtration of New York City water.]
    excerpt from Jewish Action

    #1552945

    nishtdayngesheft
    Participant

    Which Israeli posek?

    Who is being “forced” to eat the bigs?

    #1552964

    Bobchka
    Participant

    If irc only whole bugs are an issue. The bugs in the water are not likely to be whole after all the processing and therefore is batul bshishim and not an issue even if can see them.

    #1552968

    K-cup
    Participant

    Rabbi Eliezer Melamed, & no one is forced to eat bugs. I don’t know what that is in reference to. I’m curious if/why Rav belsky says the same regarding vegetables.

    #1553431

    Midwest2
    Participant

    Perhaps quote the original source from Rav Belsky zatzal?

    #1553466

    shuali
    Participant

    1) “The law goes according to the lenient opinion since it is a doubt of Rabbinical status (safek d’Rabbanan), . . . ”
    If the known infestation levels of a particular food is greater than 50%, the food is considered muchzak b’tola’im and there is a chiyuv min ha’Torah to check. Such a case is NOT a Rabbinic prohibition but rather one of the Torah.

    2) ” . . . for a person is not interested in eating the insect, but is compelled to eat it along with the food, against his will. .
    . . ”
    Since the particular food can generally easily be cleaned, removing all infestation, it is difficult to hear that anyone is forcing him to eat the bugs.

    3) ” . . . Moreover, according to the majority of poskim, a tiny insect is batel b’shishim (nullified in sixty; that is, permissible so long as forbidden ingredients constitute no more than 1/60 of the whole) from the Torah, and it was only the Chachamim (Sages) who were stringent in declaring that a ‘briyah’ (a whole insect) is not batel (nullified) even in a thousand. . . ”
    Something which ‘Only the Chachomim prohibited’ is nonetheless prohibited. And even the Kreisi who entertains the possibility that a berya is botul, is of the opinion it is so b’elef (1/1000, not 1/60) as suggested.

    4) ” . . . Some poskim say that the Chachamim were stringent only in regards to an insect that has some importance, but if it is tiny and disgusting, even from rabbinical status, it is batel b’shishim. In addition, it’s also doubtful whether in actuality a tiny insect exists.”
    What are the tiny insects “if they don’t even exist? An insect – for example a mite, which the nosei keilim on the Shulchan Aruch refer to as millbin or mill worms, is very visible and easily detected when they move, so there is little reason not to assur.

    5) ” . . . Where can I find some sources to look through on this topic. It is quite surprising as most or all kashrus organizations make it seem as a Torah issur too eat vegetables that have not been checked for bugs.”
    As explained above, any food with known or presumed infestation levels of above 50% is considered muchzak and they may not be eaten prior to checking. This obligation is a Torah obligation. From 10% to 50% (others say from as little as 5%) the obligation is to check remains, albeit of Rabbinical origin. Only levels below 10% (or 5%) are free from any obligation to check.

    #1553606

    iacisrmma
    Participant

    Midwest2: I am waiting for a talmid of Rav Belsky to respond to your question where we can find the original psak. The CRCWEB dot org cite has a number of piskei halacha that were heard from Rav Belsky directly including:

    Copepods in New York City Water
    Submitted by: Rabbi Yaakov D. Lach
    Rav Belsky permits drinking New York City water
    without a filter. His primary reason is that the reservoir,
    by definition and in function, is a bor (water pit) and
    therefore the creatures that develop there are
    permitted. Although the heter of a water pit is only to
    drink straight from the pit (since when removed from
    the pit, the creatures are considered “piraish” /
    separated and become prohibited), in our case this is
    not a concern. This is because in New York City all the
    creatures show up dead at the tap, due to
    chlorination. There are Rishonim who are lenient and
    rule that once dead, the creature remains mutar,
    even when separated. We are allowed to follow this
    opinion when there is a tziruf (additional lenient
    factor). Here, the tziruf is that the incidence of the
    creatures is not very common, generally being only a
    miut hamatzui. Rav Belsky himself drinks unfiltered
    water.

    #1553626

    K-cup
    Participant

    Shuali
    He is discussing only small bugs, like we see in your 3rd point, so your first point isn’t so relevant.
    As for your 2nd point, people pasken you CAN’T check many vegetables AT ALL, strawberries, brusselsprouts, ect… it is certainly not so easy to wash bugs off.
    So, for small bugs, perhaps we can call them batel, such is his point.
    As for your 5th point, are there any teshuvos written on the topic, I would like to really look I to this, I came across that information online from the OU and StarK, but with no sources listed.

    #1553674

    Sholom D
    Participant

    K-cup : You will want to read Rav Eitam Henkin z”l’s sefer, לכם יהיה לאכלה, which you can purchase from the publisher, who will mail it to you.
    Rav Melamed referred to it in his essay and you will find there a systematic treatment of these issues, with the emphasis on analyzing the sources.

    It has multiple haskomos, including from Rav Mazuz.

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