The Jew And The Carrot

OU To Certify Kitniot This Passover

By Renee Ghert-Zand

  • Print
  • Share Share
thinkstock

The Orthodox Union wants to take the guesswork out of eating kitniyot on Passover. With no kitniyot kosher certification to go by, eaters of legumes and several grains during the holiday—traditionally Sephardi Jews, but now also others—have had to rely on their own judgment that there was no hametz, or leaven, in a food product.

Now, the experts have stepped in to alleviate any possible confusion. For the first time ever, the OU has introduced OU Kitniyot, a new certification symbol that can appear on kosher for Passover products.

“People may assume a food product is kitniyot, but there could actually be hametz hidden it,” warned Rabbi Moshe Elefant, COO of the Orthodox Union’s kashrut division in a phone interview with The Jew and the Carrot. “This new certification is critical because you can’t tell just from the ingredients list whether something is really kitniyot and nothing else.”

The rabbi cited ascorbic acid, basically vitamin C, which is commonly found in food items. “Ascorbic acid can be either hametz or kitniyot,” Elefant explained. “We check the source.”

But, as of right now, the only products certified OU Kitniyot are Hagada Cookies Series, Papachoudo Cookies, Osem Bamba, Neptune Spices and Shkediya Sunflower Seeds.

Click to see the rest of the section, Click for more Passover stories

“The impetus for this new kosher symbol was our being anxious to serve the entire Jewish community, which of course includes our Sephardi brothers and sisters,” Elefant noted.

But it seems to also be a good business move in terms of the OU’s relationship with food manufacturers. Although there are only a handful of OU Kitniyot authorized products for Passover this year, the rabbi expects a lot of growth in the future.

“Just in the last couple of days since are announcement about OU Kitniyot, we’ve gotten calls from companies wanting the certification,” he shared. “I imagine that manufacturers will be watching how things go this Pesach and will decide they want the designation.

A door has now been opened for food producers who thought they were shut out on Passover. “They can’t get the Ashkenazi market, but now they can get the Sephardi market,” Elefant said.


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: passover2 2013, orthodox union, passover, kosher, kitniot

The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.




Find us on Facebook!
  • Prime Suspect? Prime Minister.
  • Move over Dr. Ruth — there’s a (not-so) new sassy Jewish sex-therapist in town. Her name is Shirley Zussman — and just turned 100 years old.
  • From kosher wine to Ecstasy, presenting some of our best bootlegs:
  • Sara Kramer is not the first New Yorker to feel the alluring pull of the West Coast — but she might be the first heading there with Turkish Urfa pepper and za’atar in her suitcase.
  • About 1 in 40 American Jews will get pancreatic cancer (Ruth Bader Ginsberg is one of the few survivors).
  • At which grade level should classroom discussions include topics like the death of civilians kidnapping of young Israelis and sirens warning of incoming rockets?
  • Wanted: Met Council CEO.
  • “Look, on the one hand, I understand him,” says Rivka Ben-Pazi, a niece of Elchanan Hameiri, the boy that Henk Zanoli saved. “He had a family tragedy.” But on the other hand, she said, “I think he was wrong.” What do you think?
  • How about a side of Hitler with your spaghetti?
  • Why "Be fruitful and multiply" isn't as simple as it seems:
  • William Schabas may be the least of Israel's problems.
  • You've heard of the #IceBucketChallenge, but Forward publisher Sam Norich has something better: a #SoupBucketChallenge (complete with matzo balls!) Jon Stewart, Sarah Silverman & David Remnick, you have 24 hours!
  • Did Hamas just take credit for kidnapping the three Israeli teens?
  • "We know what it means to be in the headlines. We know what it feels like when the world sits idly by and watches the news from the luxury of their living room couches. We know the pain of silence. We know the agony of inaction."
  • When YA romance becomes "Hasidsploitation":
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.