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2016 Kosher Travel Guide
|Plus: Sabbath Mode Oven Alerts, Latest on Beers, The Gift of Fire, Kashrus in Israel|
The Meat Smugglers -In April, twelve men were arrested in Israel for smuggling meat into the country, and for purportedly selling treif meat as kosher. They had in their possession holograms and kosher tape with the logos of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel and of the Badatz Beit Yosef. The 12 suspects included both Arabs and Jews. In addition, the authorities seized 60,000 pounds of meat at the Black Angus plant in Atarot.
The operation began with purchasing outdated meat imported from South America to the Port of Haifa. From there the meat was trucked legally to the town of Ramallah, which is controlled by the Palestinian Authority. Sometimes, the group received the meat as a donation from the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA).
From there the meat was shipped to the Black Angus company in Atarot where it was repacked and given new production and expiration dates. It is also assumed that they used the packing tape, kosher stickers and holograms which were discovered in the facility.
Black Angus shipped the meat to 27 high end non-kosher restaurants, and it was assumed that it was sent also to kosher restaurants, although that is not completely clear. Presumably, the restaurants were offered a very low price for the meat, and so they bought it.
Roy Linger of the Ministry of Agriculture does not believe that the restaurants were innocent. He is convinced that there will be additional arrests based on those findings. There was paperwork accompanying these meat sales but there was none backing up the meat and veterinary inspection which are required. Restaurateurs should have refused the meat, which they did not.
Everyone is asking, “Where were the rabbis in all this?” Supposedly, the mashgichim and administrators of the various rabbinates across the country should have spotted this, which they did not; but the smugglers had used trucks with double walls to conceal their cargo. A month before, an astute mashgiach did spot a box of meat that was forged and the relevant authorities handled the case. Maybe this meat is from the same source, maybe not.
Unfortunately, this is not the only occurrence of meat smuggling.
Rafi Yochai, the one in charge for the Chief Rabbinate to deal with unaurthorized use of kosher claims and other forgeries, commented on Kol Chai Radio. He said that of all 27 restaurants listed among the papers seized, not a single one was kosher. No kosher restaurant, he said, received the non-kosher meat. And no meat was found with kosher tags, tapes or holograms.
He believes that the tapes, stickers and holograms were left over from Deli Katef, which three years ago were certified by the Chief Rabbinate and by Badatz Beit Yosef. They had occupied that same building.
The Latest on Beers -Since many beers are not kosher-certified, people still rely on lists of recommended and not recommended beers. What follows is a brief look at recent beer issues and policies from the “cRc” and the “Star-K”.
The “cRc” Policy on Beer
All standard unflavored beers with no additives are acceptable, even without kosher certification. This applies to both American and imported beers, light, dark and non-alcoholic beers.
Flavored beer, including those flavored with spices, botanicals, or fruits, require hashgacha.
The following are exceptions:
(1) Many breweries produce specialty brews that have additives; please check the label and do not assume that all varieties are acceptable.
(2) Beers known to be produced at microbreweries, pub breweries, or craft breweries require certification.
(3) Milk stouts and other beers which contain lactose, require certification.
(4) Beers from Israel require certification to ensure that terumah, ma'aser, shemita, and related halachos, are observed.
“Star-K” Alert on Maryland Beers
The “Star-K” informs us that two large beer distribution companies in Baltimore and the surrounding areas are Jewish owned. As such, many brands of beer sold in the Baltimore area are chometz she’avar alav haPesach, and may not be purchased at this time. A complete list of the affected beers can be found at http://tinyurl.com/hj3f8v6. These companies are the exclusive distributors of these brands in the listed areas.
The distributors have informed the “Star-K” that the stock of beer that they owned over Pesach will not be depleted until sometime in July. A more precise date will be posted as soon as it becomes available. Please check the “Star-K” website after July 1st for an update. Until that time, these beers should not be purchased. If you have already purchased any of the listed beers since Pesach, please consult your rabbi for guidance.
The “Star-K” believes that all other brands of beers that are not included in the list do not pose a problem. Also, any beer (even the above mentioned brands) can be purchased at Kosher Bite located at 6309 Reisterstown Rd., since they are from before Pesach.
This information applies only to Maryland by county as specified in the list. The “Star-K” does not have any information about beers sold outside Maryland
See the “cRc” website for both recommended and not recommended beers. The recommended list contains hundreds of beers, bother kosher-certified and no certified. For further details about the use of animal products in all known beers and liquors, go to www.barnivore.com
The “cRc” List of NOT Recommended Beers:
21st Amendment Brewery - Assorted Varieties
Abita Brewing Company - Assorted Varieties
Allagash Brewing Co. - Assorted Varieties
Barley John's Brew Pub - Assorted Varieties
Branchline Brewing Co. - Assorted Varieties
Bud Light - Chelada
Bud Light - Lime
Bud Light Lime - Apple-Ahh-Rita
Bud Light Lime - Cran-Brrr-Rita
Bud Light Lime - Lemon-Ade-Rita
Bud Light Lime - Lime-A-Rita
Bud Light Lime - Mang-O-Rita
Bud Light Lime - Raz-Ber-Rita
Bud Light Lime - Straw-Ber-Rita
Budweiser - Chelada
Cape Ann Brewing Company - Assorted Varieties
Coast Brewing Co. - Assorted Varieties
Dock Street Brewing Company - Assorted Varieties
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery - Assorted Varieties
Flying Dog Brewery - Assorted Varieties
Flying Fish Brewing Co. - Assorted Varieties
Fordham Brewing Company - Assorted Varieties
Goose Island Beer Co. - Fulton Street Blend
Goose Island Beer Co. - Gillian
Goose Island Beer Co. - Halia
Goose Island Beer Co. - Juliet
Goose Island Beer Co. - Lolita
Goose Island Beer Co. - Madame Rose
Goose Island Beer Co. - Sofie
Hardywood Park Craft Brewery - Assorted Varieties
Harpoon Brewery - Assorted Varieties
HenHouse Brewing Company - Assorted Varieties
Holy City Brewing Company - Assorted Varieties
Iron Springs Pub & Brewery - Assorted Varieties
Lift Bridge Brewing Co. - Assorted Varieties
Mackeson - Triple Stout Milk Beer
Marshall Wharf Brewing Co. - Assorted Varieties
Marston’s Beer Company - Assorted Varieties
Odell Brewing Co. - Assorted Varieties
Oxbow Brewery - Assorted Varieties
Oyster House Brewing Company - Assorted Varieties
Port City Brewing Company - Assorted Varieties
Porterhouse Brewing Company - See The Porterhouse Brewing Company
Redhook Ale Brewery - Assorted Varieties
Rogue Brewery - Assorted Varieties
Shock Top - Assorted Varieties
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. - Assorted Varieties
Sixpoint Brewery - Assorted Varieties
Spring House Brewing Company-Assorted Varieties
Stewart's Brewing Co. - Assorted Varieties
The Porterhouse Brewing Company - Assorted Varieties
Upright Brewing - Assorted Varieties
Ventnor Brewery - Assorted Varieties
Victory Brewing - Assorted Varieties
Wynkoop Brewing Company - Assorted Varieties
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