January 15, 2017 7:24 pm at 7:24 pm #619019
Is the issur on certain types of produce a product of our modern society or through the centuries have frum people avoided the likes of strawberries, brussels sprouts even grapes because of bugs? Did Hashem create these natural bounties to test us without allowing us to enjoy them without going through a torturous cleansing process. Is it only now in modern times, that these fruits ad vegetables have become infested?January 15, 2017 7:32 pm at 7:32 pm #1209030
The issue has been around for centuries. Infestation constantly changes.
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Wasn’t plain strawberries once more common in the homes of ehrliche yidden?January 15, 2017 7:52 pm at 7:52 pm #1209032
If you spray it with DDT the bugs go away (supposedly).January 15, 2017 8:34 pm at 8:34 pm #1209033
Constantly changes? SO tell me which produce that once was infested is now OK to eat? Seems like a one-way street.January 15, 2017 8:42 pm at 8:42 pm #1209034
In modern times, infestation has increased as certain effective pesticides have been banned.January 15, 2017 8:45 pm at 8:45 pm #1209035
But there was a time when there were no pesticides, so were people careful not to eat things we consider infested?January 15, 2017 9:31 pm at 9:31 pm #1209036
I suspect that a few hundred years ago, at least in eastern Europe, very few varieties of produce were available, and the ones that were — potatoes, onions, beets, etc. — didn’t have infestation problems.January 15, 2017 11:02 pm at 11:02 pm #1209037
Yehuday, it depends where.
Northern Poland, Lithuania, yes, agreed- a lot of root vegetables, maybe apples and pears in summer.
But further South- and I’m not talking coast of the Mediterranean south, I’m talking about countries commonly considered part of Eastern Europe- there were Jews living in places that had a lot of fresh produce in the summer. Asparagus. Cauliflower. A great variety of berries, including raspberries, were used to make jams and preserves. I’ve often wondered how that worked. Dried fruits like raisins and dried figs were also quite common, by the way.January 15, 2017 11:35 pm at 11:35 pm #1209038
Look at the link I posted. The Pri Chodosh and Pri Toar list fruits and other produce which had tolaim.January 15, 2017 11:44 pm at 11:44 pm #1209039
So then Hashem did not create that produce for Bnai Yisroel to consume. If not, why not?January 15, 2017 11:50 pm at 11:50 pm #1209040
He didn’t create pig or lobster for our consumption either. Do you have the same question about those?January 16, 2017 12:07 am at 12:07 am #1209041
He created the fruits and vegetables to be eaten as long as there are no tolaim. It is not the fruit or vegetables that is assur but the tolaim. Pesticides helped with this issue but many of the ones that worked well can no longer be used. The Star-K has an extensive list of fruits and vegetables and how to wash and use them.January 16, 2017 12:35 am at 12:35 am #1209042
He created the fruits and vegetables to be eaten as long as there are no tolaim. It is not the fruit or vegetables that is assur but the tolaim.
All true, and most types of fruits and vegetables are either able to be cleaned or are clean in some parts of the world.
Even if not, though, it’s not a kashya.January 16, 2017 2:13 am at 2:13 am #1209043
“So then Hashem did not create that produce for Bnai Yisroel to consume. If not, why not?”
What about things that are poisonous?January 16, 2017 2:43 am at 2:43 am #1209044
It’s also bugs that we can see. Nowadays people use lightboxes, have electric lighting in their homes, typically wear eye-correction lenses if they need it, access to resources on what’s infested and etc, and there is more awareness. Plus there are more alternatives to choose from if something is forbidden.
Generally I think the average person today is better able to spot insects, and thus see what’s infested and cannot be eaten. Plus one isn’t desperate.
Also… Maybe back in the day rabbis were stringent about checking, but now they decided it’s not even worth it because people can just eat something else.June 17, 2017 11:22 pm at 11:22 pm #1298310
The cRc has updated its strawberry policy. Now, in line with what other hechsherim have been saying, they require soap.
Note: still others feel even that isn’t sufficient.
June 16, 2017
The cRc (Chicago Rabbinical Council) has been finding a high occurrence of insects in strawberries so that the previous method of rinsing and rubbing under a strong stream of water is not being efficient in removing the bugs (especially those that are hiding under the seeds). Therefore, until further notice, we recommend the following method to clean the strawberries from insects:
cut off tops (try to avoid making a hole);
soak and agitate strawberries in soapy water (do not substitute with vegetable wash) using a concentrated solution of approximately one tablespoon of dishwashing liquid mixed together with no more than 8 cups of water for 2 minutes. (We have found Seventh Generation Non-Fragrance Natural Dish Liquid Soap to be the ideal soap for those who are concerned about a “soapy aftertaste”);
rub each strawberry thoroughly under a stream of cold water with hand (or preferably with a bristled brush like a toothbrush);
soak and agitate strawberries a second time for 2 minutes in new soapy water with the same ratio as above;
Once all five steps are done you may enjoy the strawberries without further inspection. Please note that this does not apply to organic strawberries that are very difficult to get cleaned and therefore should be avoided at this time. Of course, if one wants to avoid the above steps, one can eat the strawberries (even organic) by simply cutting off the tops and peeling off the entire outside of the strawberries, followed by a rinse.
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