Why are the Hashgochos promulgating a fraud: Oat Matzos

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    There is widespread misinformation listing oats as one of the chameshes haminim. There are many facts that lay doubts to this claim: Oats do not look like the other grains, they grow in a different fashion, they were not domesticated in the Near East, and most importantly, they do not naturally contain gluten.

    The natural chametz process begins with the introduction of water, which activates the enzyme amylase to convert starches to sugars. Yeasts (fungi)that are naturally in the grain then consume the sugars and release alcohol and carbon dioxide. The gas bubbles are trapped in the stretchy, sticky protein, gluten, and hence, the rising quality, and halachic status of chametz. Oats, rice, the kitniyot and other grains without gluten do not have this gas entrapment, and are thus not chametz, and not qualified to be matzoh.

    Oats have additional characteristics that differentiate it from the wheats and barleys. The tough seed husk of oat must be removed by running it through rollers, or centrifugal hammer mills. Once removed, the main enzyme lipase starts digesting the fat content of the oat, leading to rancidity and loss in four days. To prevent this spoilage, oats are heated to deactivate the enzyme, often with steam. Unless the bakeries are hulling and milling and baking following soon after, they are using pre-stabilized grain, there is also no amylase as that is inactivated at 90C. ( In wheat, the germ is also spoiled by lipase, but much more slowly. Commercial whole wheat flour removes the germ for this reason).

    We have a principle of oness, rachamana patrei. Why is this not real enough to the celiacs that they risk a very real possibility of bracha lvatalah, and why do commercial and hashgocha intrests push this product with a very real possibility of michsol learabbim?


    What do you believe are the 5 grains? And when do you beleive the mix-up occurred?


    In your opinion. What are the 5 species of grain?

    me too


    See http://www.medethics.org.il/articles/NA2/NishmatAbraham.OC.461.asp

    By Horav Avraham Abraham MD a Talmid Muvhak of Reb Shlomo Zalmen Auerbach ZT”L

    and http://www.aish.com/h/pes/l/48971141.html

    However, some characteristics of the matzah do have an impact on health. The matzah may only be made from one of the five species of grain that can become chametz (leavened). These grains are wheat, rye, barley, spelt and oats. Since only these grains can become chametz, only these grains may be used for matzah. For a person with Celiac Disease, eating standard wheat matzah could be dangerous because it contains gluten (a protein found in wheat and other cereal grains). While wheat matzah is generally preferred, if someone has celiac disease, oat matzah (some types of which are marketed as gluten-free) is perfectly acceptable.2


    me too


    So Rashi & the Aruch etc were fr….ds ?

    Excerpt from http://www.medethics.org.il/articles/NA2/NishmatAbraham.OC.461.asp

    ???? ??????? ?????? ???? ????? ???????? ?? ??? ???? ??? ???”? ?????? ?????? ???? (??’ ??????????? ??????? ??? ? ?’ ???)

    ??? ????? ???? ??? ???????, ???? ???? “?????”, ??? ?????? ?? ?? ????? ????? ???????, ??? ???? ??”? ?????? (?? ?”?) ??????? (? ?”?)

    , ??? ????? ???? ????? ?? ???????? ??? ??????, ??? ???????? ????? ?????

    Oat in english = n. avoine in French


    Al rishon rishon. When did the mix up occur? Maybe when they disregarded the Rambam Chometz Umatza 5;1 and Brachos 3;1,

    What are the grains, two wheats and three barleys. Today, we have way more cultivars of wheat, so we really are meshubad to the science that shows us what the profile of the grain is. Barley we don’t use because it is softer and faster to become chometz, probably not too tasty, and regarded as animal food in the Mishna. Spelt and rye, both being wheat look and grow alikes are both she’eladik because rye is really a cold climate plant, and spelt may be sort of new to the scene. In terms of gluten content, the line up in descending order is wheat, barley, spelt, rye, and oats at 0.

    Busybody, thank you for the scientist compliment, Posek is way off. Other than the pejorative title, I was just asking questions based on what is and isn’t. As you cited, what Shiboles Shual is, is shanui bemachlokes. Truth, often but not always, has much to do with what is in front of the eyes. Look at the Rambam in Berachot, grind some oats into flour, try to make a loaf of bread out of it, and get back to me.



    To make pure (no wheat) oat bread, I have used baking soda/powder with a batter. It comes out like bread (some call this a quick bread).

    I googled “barley bread recipe”. According to what I found, you can’t make a regular loaf of bread from barley either. Every barley bread recipe that I saw, at least pure barley bread – w/o other flours, also calls for baking soda/powder.

    So then, would you now consider barley not one of the 5 grains?

    Ctrl Alt Del

    “grind some oats into flour, try to make a loaf of bread out of it, and get back to me.”

    If you start relying on what you can produce or replicate from the torah, (to test out what has been previousely set down as halachah) you will be throwing out a LOT of torah. Many, many things that the Gaonim have said don’t seem to fit with our modern day understanding of anatomy and physiology but we don’t throw that out do we? They also stated that cheese can only be made out of milk from kosher animals yet you can find porcine cheese. And even examples of human milk cheese. the point is that even if our scientific testing doesnt corroborate what the halacha is we don’t throw it out. Vastly greater torah minds have seen fit to include oats in the count of chameshet minei dagan.










    Rashi lived before Ramban. Most Ashenazic poskim follow Rashi on this. I thing calling them “frauds” might be over the line here.

    me too

    DR. Twisted Did you see the Dr Abraham’s article for which I provided a link?

    Did you see this ???? ??? ????”? ?????? ?????? ?????? ?????? ?????? ?? ???? ???? ???????. ??????? ?????? ?????? ?? ???? ???? ???? ??? ??????? ???? ???? ??? ??????? ??? ?? ???? ?????? ??? ??

    Did you see all names of the Gedolei Poskei Hador who unequivocally said that OATS FOR ALL HALACHIC PURPOSES ARE ???



    Just curious busybody, did you ever see oats in the raw, did you ever see it growing? Yeah,I saw, I wouldn’t make oatmeal for pesach, but I humbly would desist from making any brocho other than adomo on it. DAGAN, ok, hameshes haminim, enough to say only maybe.

    MDG: I bake sourdough (really really chometz) I did straight barley with just my wheat based starter (about 5% of the batter including water– I read what you read and didn’t want to waste the starter.) With a real long proofing time, it came out something flat like an english muffin, and somewhat tougher. It tasted medium bad, but it had tzuras hapas. As to baking powder, there is a fascinating discussion of hamutz al yedei davar acher, starting with Rav Bakeshi Doron, and followed by lots of arguments. (kovetz hamoadim, pesach bais. (Moriah)

    Dr Hall: I apologized for the phrasing of the title already. Just if you accept that the mechanics of hametz requires gluten, oats just doesn’t make the cut. I know that there are times where halacha follows reality, and times where halacha paskins its own reality, I sense that this is one of the former.


    Twisted: There is some sort of Machlokes by almost every one of the 5 Minim. We assume that the 5 are what we have held them to be, even though logically some shouldn’t belong. Also, if gluten is the determining agent, then what is the Machlokes of R’ Yochanan Ben Nuri and the Chachamim by rice?


    Sam2, it is more than 30 days before the chag, and this is a year old rant, but that is a great mehalach. The Chachomim understood chometz as the instant self acting variety that you get with the grains that contain amylase and gluten, and YBN that any “dagan” and any ferment is chometz. A good tasty recipe for fermented rice is let it soak for FOUR DAYS, blend to a loose paste in blender or processor, season and steam for 20 minutes.

    About Maklokes, it is because a) we have been urbanized, and even when not, we were disallowed from agricultural pursuits. b) crops and cereals were constantly bred, selected and improved. The wheat of today is not the wheat of our grandfathers, and certainly not the variety of the Mishna. Multipy the confusion by upheavals and change of continent and of micro climate. So we are forced to rely on second hand information. BH, two things happened in the last 150 years. Jews returned to agriculture (this was really big news for esrogim too) and we became able to analyze plants by their components. We can see in a lab what chazal describe as happening to certain grains exposed to water for 20 minutes. And we can be mevarer sfeikos, and new sfeikos arise, like why would we think oats are a chametz-able grain.


    Oats are definitely one of the five grains.You misspeak.

    “and most importantly, they do not naturally contain gluten.”

    You like many others, have a slight bit of misinformation. The jury is still out on this one. Many specialists believe that oats can contain gluten, and not all of them agree that it is safe for someone who has celiac to eat oat-based foods. It is possible that SMALL amounts of oats may be permissible. Or, it is possible that a certain TYPE of oats or oat product may be safe to eat in small quantity. Buit it is not a blanket statement. And it is always preferable to see a “gluten free” label on the item, to be sure.


    Rashi specifically defines shiboles shual as oats (avino b’laz). The problem with that is as described above by other posters.

    1. oats does not look like the other four

    2. oats are a not from genus triticum as are the other four.

    3. oats have no (or little) gluten.

    4. Oats did not grow in Eretz Yisroel or Bavel.

    Personally, I think that the description given of shiblos shual fits emmer wheat (a different species from bread wheat)which grew in abundance in Israel and Bavel. One might say that Rashi, not being familiar with other varieties of wheat, was simply mistaken, but I think that you have to be a Reshone to say that. Personally, I do not and would not use oat matzoh for matzas mitzvah nor do I make hamotzi on oat products.


    Oomis: Oats do not naturally contain gluten. The reason most celiacs can’t eat oats is because most oats almost everywhere in the world have been cross-contaminated with products that do contain gluten.

    RK: Rashi also says that Orez isn’t rice…


    Oi vay, RK you are likely to get a drubbing from the infalibility crowd for that hava amina. Rashi also describes the Shiboles Shual as looking like a fox tail. The seed in its green husk does indeed have that shape, but if he meant the cluster of grain ( there isn’t one in oats) he may have been referring to a heavy awned barley which would also look like a tail, and the latter would also conform to the discussion on the daf, and the mishna in Kilayim, which groups Shiboles shual with the barleys, and not with the wheats. A wild cultivar of oat type grass grows all over the hills here, and one hypothesis I saw has this inedible type being vectored up to Europe by the Romans, and there it crossed with something to become aveena sativum.


    Sam2: Rashi says dochan is rice which gives it the same din as if it would be called orez.


    I know that we don’t usually bring back dead threads, but regarding the question of whether Rashi’s identification of oats as one of the five grains is accurate, just published today is a description of what was found at an ancient archeological site in Israel:


    Avena sterils is a wild relative, possibly the ancestor, of the common domestic oat Avena sativa.

    Rashi may have had a tradition that has been since lost, or he may have been writing with Ruach HaKodesh. But in any case, the claim that oats were not eaten in the Land of Israel in ancient times has now been disproven. It is also interesting that two of the other grains found were forms of wheat and barley.


    Thank you, Charlieh.

    That was very interesting.

    And I’m impressed that you’re a real genuine dedicated member of the CR.

    When you read the article, did you immediately remember this three year old thread?


    Oat matzah tastes like porridge.


    I remembered that there was a thread but I had to use the search engine to find it.


    That is a good find Charliehall, but it only shows that some cultivation of wild oats happened long before the advent of farming. The find is only of a wild species of oats that was being cultivated by hunter gatherer tribes thousands of years before the advent of the five species.

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