Passover Paradox: Why So Much Kosher?

NEW YORK, April 1 (UPI) — There are 1 million observant U.S. Jews, yet some 45 percent of foods sold at Passover are kosher — a phenomenon U.S. researchers call the “Passover paradox.”

An article published in the Chemical & Engineering News says the number of kosher products on U.S. supermarket shelves grew from 3,000 in 1970 to more than 70,000 today.

Senior editor Bethany Halford says kosher products meet the strict dietary and preparation standards set by Jewish law — a rabbi must know everything that goes into a product to certify it kosher, down to the individual molecules that make up various foods.

“When there are so many ingredients, obviously just ascertaining the knowledge of which ingredients are kosher and which are not kosher is a massive undertaking,” Rabbi Don Yoel Levy, chief executive officer of OK Kosher Certification, tells Chemical & Engineering News.

OK Kosher Certification certifies 114,000 products, including more than 10,000 flavorings.

The article suggests the kosher certification may be attractive to vegans and vegetarians, who do not want to eat animal-based products, as well as to Muslims because kosher food is pork free.

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Categorized | Engineering, Other
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