Mislabeled Kosher Products

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  • #1728101

    Avraham
    Participant

    The OU certifies over 1,000 coffee creamers. They are labeled “NON-DAIRY” in big bold letters. However, they contain casein, a milk derivative. The OU refuses to correct this; a case of “Lifnei Iver Lo Sitain Michshol”!

    #1728364

    apushatayid
    Participant

    “non dairy” is a nutritional, not a kashrus statement. The only kashrus statement on the packaging is the symbol. ou, oud etc..

    if you cant, or wont, understand the difference perhaps you shouldnt buy products they certify.

    #1728363

    puttinginmy2cents
    Participant

    If it does not say PAREV, then I don’t see a problem. If it says PAREV, I’m guessing that the amount of casein is so minute, that it is batal b’shishim.

    #1728361

    Neville ChaimBerlin
    Participant

    This is ancient news.

    By the way, the casein probably has a din of cheese. If you don’t usually hold by the OU’s kulos on soft cheeses with regards to gevinas akum, it could be a problem altogether.

    #1728360

    laskern
    Participant

    I think the answer is that milk currently is not an issur and therefore we can be mevatel it and it becomes botel since the most it can be by the government allowance is 1/200.

    #1728355

    laskern
    Participant

    The question is why do they put it in there? If for taste it certainly is not botel and otherwise how can you mevatel directly when you can leave it out?

    #1728350

    ubiquitin
    Participant

    A few questions:

    1) Does the ou say ou-d ?

    2) you say “a case of “Lifnei Iver Lo Sitain Michshol””
    What “michshol” concerns you?

    #1728296

    CTLAWYER
    Participant

    Avraham,
    You are confusing the USDA standard for calling something dairy with the halachic definition of milchige. They are not the same.
    Sometimes a product labeled non-dairy will have an OU-D on the label.
    The hechsher information is for Jews who care. The non-dairy labeling us for the general population

    #1728297

    laskern
    Participant

    Did you ask them, what did they say? . It is unlawful to mislabel something.

    #1728299

    one man band
    Participant

    Does that actually make it milchig or is it batul?

    #1728312

    laskern
    Participant

    After research I find that non-dairy can have .5% milk, 5/1000 which probably is botel, whereas dairy free can not have any milk.

    #1728316

    puttinginmy2cents
    Participant

    If it doesn’t say PAREVE anywhere on the label – no problem. If it does say O-U PAREV, then there might be a problem. Could it be that the amount of casein is so minute that it’s batal ?

    #1728421

    Neville ChaimBerlin
    Participant

    Casein is a stabilizing agent derived from milk ; it probably doesn’t add taste, but it serves the purpose in making the thing what it is. Bittul b’shishim does not apply. Sorry. As the hechsher correctly states, it’s dairy.

    As far as the legal standards, I don’t think the OP was claiming to have a legal complaint. Ethically, is there something wrong with using a dairy product in your food and calling it “non-dairy” because it flies under the legal standards? I personally believe so, but that’s not an argument not to hechsher it.

    #1728419

    laskern
    Participant

    Look at RMA SA YD 97,6

    #1728428

    laskern
    Participant

    Nev is telling us that this is what is called דבר המעמיד which is not botel so it is not like milk and the RMA above does not apply.

    #1728448

    Milhouse
    Participant

    This whole thread is ridiculous.

    1. The OU does not control what is on the product label. The OU cannot tell a company what to call its products. If it tries the manufacturer will tell it to take a hike. The only thing the OU controls is its trademarked symbol, and the symbol on non-dairy creamers is OU-D.

    2. Even if a manufacturer were willing to accommodate the OU’s request, they can’t. They are legally required to label these products “non-dairy”, because that is what they are. As laskern says it’s unlawful to mislabel something, and therefore these products cannot be labeled “dairy”. That also answers NC’s concerns about ethics.

    #1728477

    laskern
    Participant

    Halacha and labeling is not same. Maybe, there are guidelines by the government of milk amount in a product to be called dairy.

    #1728548

    Neville ChaimBerlin
    Participant

    “They are legally required to label these products “non-dairy”, because that is what they are.”
    Sorry, but I straight up don’t believe this at all. I have plenty of parve things in my fridge that don’t say “non-dairy.”

    “That also answers NC’s concerns about ethics.”
    Even if such a legal requirement did for sure exist, that wouldn’t change my mind. I would just conclude that the law is unethical. US law isn’t Torah. Jews cannot treat it as non-dairy and vegans can’t eat it, so what is it accomplishing other than tricking people? If it were for allergies, it could say lactose-free.

    #1728593

    yudel
    Participant

    Milhouse is very much on point.
    The best consumer is an “educated” consumer.

    #1728624

    Milhouse
    Participant

    Neville, things that the consumer would not think were dairy don’t have to be labeled non-dairy. But “creamer” sounds like it would be dairy, so they must label it.

    “Ice cream” can’t be used at all, even with an explicit “non-dairy” label, and even with an explicit label of its origins such as “soy ice cream” or “coconut ice cream”. If it’s not dairy it cannot be called “ice cream” at all.

    #1728625

    Milhouse
    Participant

    the law is unethical. US law isn’t Torah. Jews cannot treat it as non-dairy and vegans can’t eat it, so what is it accomplishing other than tricking people?

    It is accomplishing exactly what you claim to want — not to trick people into thinking that it is dairy.

    What I wonder is how they get away with “creamed corn”.

    #1728656

    Almond milk. It’s nuts! Yet they call it “milk” (and the icing on the cake is that many are OU-D).

    Mind you, S.A. also calls it “chalav shekeidim”. And there is a maras ayin issue when served with meat.

    #1728720

    Milhouse
    Participant

    Indeed the dairy industry is trying to get the government to ban the term “almond milk”, claiming that it’s misleading. Unfortunately for them, this term has been in documented use for at least 800 years, so I doubt they will get their way. But you can’t blame them for trying…

    #1728731

    👑RebYidd23
    Participant

    You absolutely can blame them for trying. It is abuse of government and also insulting to the public.

    #1728738

    jdb
    Participant

    Mods, why are we allowing people to besmirch the OU? They refuse to change the label? This isn’t their label to change. They control the OU or OUD logo.

    #1728748

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    They are legally required to label these products “non-dairy”

    Did you read that somewhere, or is that just an assumption? I’m pretty sure there are coffee creamers which do not say “non-dairy” on them.

    If indeed this was a michshol (I don’t think it is, for a couple of reasons), although the OU couldn’t force a company to change their labels, they could refuse to certify.

    I don’t see why they should, though.

    #1728814

    🍫Syag Lchochma
    Participant

    Apy and milhouse are correct, and i agree that it is not right to badmouth the OU over this. The creamers say non dairy and the OU labeled it OUD! Do you always use store labels to determine kashrus?
    And to whomever said they have plenty non dairy products in their fridge that say non dairy….cmon! Are you just playing or are you missing the point? Coffee creamer/whitener is generally milk or cream. That is why it advertises as non dairy. The same way fake meat is advertised as meatless.

    I know people have gripes with the OU and I don’t know if they are legitimate grioes or not, but this one sounds like an uneducated consumer issue and it may be wrong to aim it at the OU.

    #1728830

    👑RebYidd23
    Participant

    Coffee creamer/whitener is generally a replacement for dairy. The real thing is just called cream.

    #1730434

    Jewbacca
    Participant

    Because it is labeled as a “creamer” under USDA regulations they have to make clear it is “non-dairy”, which means it has less than the required amount of dairy product to be deemed “dairy” (because lots of creamers are 100% dairy).

    Similar labeling regulations apply to “juice”– which has to be 100% fruit juice (of some kind) — if it is less than 100% juice, it is a “juice drink” (typically with the percentage of juice clearly stated).

    The purpose of this is to prevent people from thinking they are getting 100% cream (or half-and-half or whatever).

    #1730486

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    If that’s in the USDA regulations, the biggest companies are violating those regulations, because International Delight and Coffee-Mate don’t say “non-dairy” on them.

    #1730498

    🍫Syag Lchochma
    Participant

    They do say lactose free. Perhaps that is good as well

    #1731125

    DY: Which International Delight non-dairy? Coffee Mate has some OU-d and some are Pareve.

    #1731190

    Neville ChaimBerlin
    Participant

    “It is accomplishing exactly what you claim to want — not to trick people into thinking that it is dairy.”
    You either aren’t understanding, or are pretending not to. The creamer being discussed is true dairy, not dairy equipment. There is actual dairy in the stuff. Jews have to treat it as dairy, and vegans can’t eat it. For all intensive purposes, it might as well be milk (except for the fact that Reb Moshe might not even matir it because of the casein).

    As far as the OU goes, it’s a problem when combined with their refusal to use a DE label. People conclude that creamers like this are only dairy equipment when this is, in fact, real dairy.

    #1731212

    🍫Syag Lchochma
    Participant

    “People conclude that creamers like this are only dairy equipment when this is, in fact, real dairy.”

    that is just ignorance (my first choice of word was stupidity) on their part. When I buy soy or almond milk (for example) there is often an OUD and I know that it is 100% my achrius to find out if it is milchik or not. Are people really that ….basic?

    #1731236

    ubiquitin
    Participant

    NC
    “People conclude that creamers like this are only dairy equipment when this is, in fact, real dairy.”

    1) So thye look at the label, the OU (who is the one telling them itis kosher) tells them it is dairy, but some goyish lable maker tells them it is “non-dairy” and they decide to take some sort of palginan approach and rely on the OU that it is kosher but not dairy, and this iis the OU’s fault?

    2) Ok so they take this palginan approach, now what? what is your concern exactly?

    #1731251

    If someone would the the time to look up the items on the OU website they state in plain english which items are dairy and which are pareve.

    For example

    Coffee-Mate Coffee-mate Hazelnut Dairy OU-D Symbol required. Not Kosher for Passover.
    Coffee-Mate Non-Dairy Creamer Powder-Lite Dairy OU-D Symbol required. Not Kosher for Passover.
    Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss Coconut Milk Creamer – Sweet Creme Pareve OU Symbol required. Not Kosher for Passover.
    ***I looked at the bottle and it only has the OU and it states “Non-Dairy”. (i added this)****

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