- Tomatoes & bell peppers & other vegetables are being imported from Israel & the tithes were not removed.
- Gummy bear type candies from HariBo Company may contain bovine gelatin even when carrying a kosher certification from England stating that it is fish gelatin.
- Golan hard cheeses- many of them bear an unauthorized kosher certification.
3.1- Hod Lavan products- Many of them may bear an unauthorized kosher certification.
- Apples may contain waxes & coatings that is animal derived, even domestic.
- All fruits & vegetables should be washed with a mild solution of dish soap & water, and rinsed off very well. Washing with soap will also remove most of the poisonous pesticides. (Consumer Reports, January 1998)
- Canned pineapple in its own juice was considered by most as GRAK= (generally regarded as kosher), we have become aware of it also coming now from Mainland China, the kosher status is questionable. Unless the source is known it will now require reliable kosher supervision.
- Many fruits & vegetables do have insect infestation and therefore require a thorough inspection. The "Scallion" is considered by the average consumer as being a relatively clean vegetable as far as infestation. The fact is that the scallion is very susceptible to "thrip" infestation. Incidentally certain agriculture labs will grow scallions just to be able to have a supply of "thrips" for test purposes. The most effective method to clean scallions is by cutting all of the tubers lengthwise & agitating the scallions in a cool water solution with some dish soap for 5 minutes & rinsing well with plain water.
- We have previously written re: Maxi-health brand vitamins that they did not have an acceptable kosher certification, they have succumbed to the kosher consumer's pressure and have obtained an acceptable kosher certification. Check the label for the new certification. Herring fillets require proper kosher certification as we have previously written extensively on that subject. To the best of our knowledge the Schwartz's appetizing brand is the only filet herring appetizers that meets all of the kosher certified requirements we outlined in our previous articles. With consumer pressure the other purveyors of herring appetizers will meet the requirements for a standard that is acceptable to an educated kosher consumer.
- The common "Taurine" found in all baby formulas, its source may be from an animal source (an extract of ox bile or sharks blood). Check with the manufacturer or the kosher certifier. The ingredient "Glocosamine" for healing joints, its source may be from snails (non-kosher). The Freeda pharmacy in New York City has a substitute that comes from a kosher source. The fish products from Ossie's in Brooklyn, NY should be used "only" if raw & with skin attached. There is a new site on the web to locate kosher products & the name of the certifier. http:www.kosherFinder.com All barley should be put into hot water for 5 minutes before use to check for floating infestation. All meat derived gelatin based products even with a kosher certification should not be used. Most if not all natural heath foods or vitamins without a reliable kosher certification contain non-kosher ingredients (animal, mammal, or non-kosher fish etc derivatives). A fish store having Jewish ownership should not be a carte blanche to purchase without proper precautions e.g. a reliable kosher supervision.
- The Carmel brand wines, brandy, liquors, vodka etc. has had a change in its kosher certification status. Rabbi Rubin isthe one responsible for the kosher supervision
- Sabra Salads: Sabra Salads is not an accetable kashrus standard for the discriminating kashrus oriented consumer".
- Some models of Kitchen-Aid ovens had a feature that enabled the Sabbath observant consumer to disable certain problematic features. The Star-K certified the Ovens as acceptable, but has issued a retraction & a warning that the design is flawed & may have problems unacceptable to the Sabbath observant consumer. Note: Some of the friendly appliance concerns that a Sabbath observant consumer should be aware of; a) Auto cutoff switch-after 12 hours, b) Digital temperature readout, c) Oven lights, d) Freezer fans, e) Electronic igniters.
- Oceanside Knishes are no longer under kosher supervision of the O-U.
- Ruthy's Catering, Brooklyn is no longer certified by the Flatbush Vaad. It is certified by ARK & it is not under a reliable kashrus standard.
- Vitamins and all health foods require a reliable kosher certification. "The Kosher Consumer " does not consider the wealth of health vitamins & supplements currently reliable.
- The "Golan" brand of hard cheeses it has recently been discovered that some of the kosher certification is a forgery while some others are unreliable.
- The Dagim brand consists of various fish products. The kosher consumer should be aware that the kosher standards might not be what the kosher consumer would want to use.
- Hod-Lavan brand only produces turkey-based products, any chicken products with the Hod-Lavan name should be questioned before use. The certification of Paskesz candies manufactured in Europe are under Dayan Osher Westheim, a not recommended agency.
- The kosher consumer should be aware of products by the distributor of Golan, New Square & morning select products. It is alleged that there was questionable labeling & questionable kosher supervision on some products. Before purchasing double check the reliability of the kosher seals.
- More than twenty varieties of fruits & vegetables, including cantaloupes, eggplants, oranges, peaches, grapefruits, persimmons, squash, cucumbers, sweet potatoes & tomatoes are being waxed. Waxes made in the U. S. are vegetable, petroleum, or bug based. The "shellac" used on some products is made from the secretion of the "lac" bug. Beeswax is a substance secreted by the bee's special glands on the underside of its abdomen. Some foreign imports may use beef tallow. The FDA does have regulations requiring all waxed products to be labeled as such in the supermarkets. (Have you seen such a listing?) It is therefore advisable to wash all fruits & vegetables with a mild soap solution which will also remove most of the pesticides-see Consumer Reports January '98.
- All baby formulas contain "Taurine". The common source for taurine is an extract of animal bile or shark blood & therefore not kosher & not for a vegetarian. Call the kosher certifier to verify the source. "Glucosamine" is made from snails & or shrimp, even those that have a kosher certification should be NOT be consumed. There is an equivalent available (Freeda pharmacy, NYC) for the consumer who needs it for health reasons. We have elaborated in our fish article that it is at times preferable (as per our outlined procedures) to purchase fish in a store that is not under Rabbinical supervision, as in a case when a fish store's kosher supervision has not been set up & monitored correctly.
- Glucosomine should not be considered as an acceptably kosher product.
- Sweet & Low brand-contains cream of tarter (a wine derivative) & therefore should not be used. "Equal" brand does not contain cream of tarter.Splenda is a natural sugar substitute & is reliable. non-kosher ingredients".
- Derco Raisins, dates and nuts have lost kosher certification due to kosher violations. As noted by the O-K Labs.
- Kraft Jell-O strawberry gelatin contains non-kosher ingredients. All "Glucosamine" is made from snails (non-kosher) & should not be consumed, even the ones that have a kosher certification on the label.
- When going to any food establishment it is advisable to ask to speak to the in-house supervising Rabbi. Always be cautious if an in-house supervisor receives his enumeration from the establishment & not from the kosher certifier. Also do not assume that a host has satisfied themselves of the kosher standards established at a facility.
- Strawberries & Infestation: It is nothing new that the common strawberry is susceptible to infestation to over a dozen different types. The long stem strawberry is less susceptible but it is nevertheless still requires checking & removing the infestation before consuming them. The main infestation is at the green leaves of the strawberry. The green leaves & stem should be removed by cutting with a sharp knife a small part of the fruit with the complete leave stem (do not disturb the leaves) without making a hole in the fruit (if you did make a hole, cut the berry in half lengthwise, to facilitate a good rinse). The strawberry should be rinsed in cool water with some dish detergent (non-perfume type is preferred) in the water. Agitate in water a few times during a 5-minute period; check for black or brown spots, a slight rubbing motion will usually remove them. Rinse very well in plain water. Consumer reports January, '98 recommended washing all fruits & vegetables in a soapy solution to remove the dangerous pesticides contamination. NOTE: Fresh broccoli florets & cauliflower flower is very time consuming & almost impossible to check & clean properly-should be avoided even with kosher supervision.
- The Sweet & Low brand sugar substitute contains cream of tarter which is wine derived & should not be used by the kosher consumer. Consumers should demand a different acceptable brand. All pre-washed Romaine lettuce with an American based Hashgocha should not be used, they were found to contain at various times to be infested even with the Hashgocha. The main certifiers are Rabbi Shlomo Koenig & his Kolel, Rabbi Moskowitz, Rabbi Rapport, Star-K. The J&R produce Company is deceiving the public with many of their fresh vegetables with all types of labels intended to deceive the kosher consumer