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Israel to impose marking of unhealthy food products

November 21, 2016: The Globes:

The Israeli Ministry of Health "Committee for Regulation to Promote Healthy Nutrition will require manfacturers to mark food products containing high level of sugar, salt or fat with a warning label in red.
"Food manufacturers will also be obliged to state the number of spoons of sugar in each food product, and the will be prohibited from advertising products marked as unhealthy to children."
This will be rolled out in three stages. "The first stage will start in January 2018, the second stage 18 months later, in July 2019, while the last stage will come into effect in December 2020."
"Israel is rated second in diabetes mortality among men, second only to Mexico. Among women, Israel has the third highest diabetes mortality rate, after Mexico and Turkey. The US is often cited as the world's greatest sugar consumer but it appears that even on this count, at least in relation to children, Israel fares worse. Israeli children consume even more sweetened beverages than children in America, the world's junk food capital. 41% of 15 year old girls reported drinking sweetened drinks daily, compared with 30% in the US. Among 15 year old boys, this figure is even higher, at 45%, compared with 37% among American children. For comparison, in Canada these rates are 12% and 21%, correspondingly."
"Israel also has one of the world's highest rates of salt consumption, almost double the recommended maximum quantity, and even higher among children."
"At least 51% of products will be marked as unhealthy."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W491

Thinfilm to authenticate olive oil packaging

November 18, 2016: The FoodNavigator.com:

Thin Film Electronics is testing Near-Field Communication Technology (NFC) and an app called iOlive to track olive oil. The NFC SpeedTap tag will be a sticker on the outside of a number of olive oil bottles. These are devises that can be read with the tap of an NFC enabled smartphone. People doing this will get information on the product.

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W490

Coffee and Engineering Education

November 09, 2016: The SupermarketGuru:

The University of California, Davis is teaching a course on coffee-making which is teaching "every aspect of coffee-making matched a major topic in the chemical engineering curriculum, from the chemical reactions of roasting, to mass transfer (when hot water extracts oils and flavor compounds from coffee grounds), and fluid dynamics, which control the flow of hot water and steam."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W489

Study: Illness Outbreaks Linked to Organic Food

November 09, 2016: The SpecialtyFood.com and The Packer:

"Eighteen foodborne illnesses outbreaks between 1992 and 2014 were linked to organic food, according to a study published in the Journal of Food Protection. Salmonella and E. coli were the most commonly occurring pathogens in the study. Eight of the outbreaks were attributed to produce items, with four linked to unpasteurized dairy products—two to eggs, two to nut and seed products, and two to multi-ingredient foods. The study also found that 83 percent of the outbreaks were associated with foods that were “definitely or likely” U.S. Department of Agriculture certified organic." "They were not able to reach a conclusion on whether organic commodities are more or less likely to cause foodborne disease outbreaks."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W488

Pangasius producer in Dominican Republic gains entry to US market

November 04, 2016: The SeafoodSource:

"On 25 October, Value Aquaculture, based in Cabarete, D.R., received approval from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to import siluriformes, or pangasius, into the U.S. While the approval is valid for all pangasius produced in the Dominican Republic, Value Aquaculture is currently the only producer of the species in that country." Pangasius is a catfish."

Ed note: They are using as a name for the fish, satchi which I have not seen before and may confuse people who do not realize that this is a catfish, a non-kosher fish.

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W487

Kosher status of Israeli Army kitchens increasingly threatened

November 6, 2016: The Arutz 7:

According to Tzav 1, the organization, which works to ensure that religious IDF soldiers are able to maintain a religious lifestyle while in the Israeli army, serious breaches of kosher dietary laws have been reported which are not being addressed. Some of the complaints come from small army outposts at the far reaches of Israel.
"Officials within the organization assess that the growing number of complaints is related to the Army's decision to reduce the number of kashrut inspectors, who verify that kitchens are being managed according to the dictates of Jewish law, as well as to new procedures which make it harder to keep kosher law."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W486

New York - Animal Rights Groups Accuse South American Kosher Slaughterhouses Of Inhumane Practices

November 3, 2016: Vosisnois

"Animal rights activists are protesting shechita methods employed by South American kosher slaughterhouses, charging that animals are killed using an antiquated practice that leaves them suffering and in pain during their final moments."
"An undercover investigation by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and two Israeli organizations, Anonymous for Animals Rights and Let Animals Live, documented the shechita process at the Frigochaco kosher slaughterhouse in Paraguay, which supplies 40 percent of the kosher beef consumed by Israelis."
"Graphic video footage shows cows being subjected to the shackle and hoist method of slaughter, where the animal’s hind legs are chained before it is turned upside down for shechita, its head held in position by a sharp metal tool that resembles a trident."
"Shackle and hoist is no longer performed at Israeli slaughterhouses and has been denounced by Israel’s Chief Rabbi a few years ago. Instead, animals are placed in rotating pens, considered to be a more humane method because it does not require cows to be held in an inverted position by leg chains."
"While Israel’s Ministry of Agriculture’s Veterinary Services procedures specify that all imported meats should be subject to the same strict criteria used in Israel, a spokesperson for the department admitted that Israel cannot enforce its standards on other countries. Instead, Veterinary Services is working to promote slaughter in more humane ways."
"The undercover investigation captured video footage filmed at slaughterhouses in Paraguay, Argentina and Uruguay."
"In response to the investigation, the Chief Rabbinate condemned the activities documented in the footage but stressed that legal action can only be taken by other government bodies."
"We were horrified to see the shocking abuse of animals,” a statement from the Chief Rabbinate said on Wednesday. "Animal abuse is a serious offense according to the Torah of Israel."
“However, in accordance with the law and the ruling of the High Court of Israel, the Chief Rabbinate cannot revoke kashrut in situations where there is no harm to the core issues of kashrut, and therefore, unfortunately, we are precluded from dealing with this matter,” the statement said. 'We hope that the authorized bodies will handle this matter with all of their capabilities to prevent the recurrence of further such acts.'"

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W485

Kikkerland Design Recalls Teapots with Stands Due to Fire Hazard

November 1, 2016: The CPSC

Kikkerland and Cost Plus World Market brand teapots with bamboo stands has been recalled because the bamboo votive stand can catch fire, posing a fire hazard to consumers.
This recall involves Kikkerland and Cost Plus World Market brand teapots with bamboo stands. The 30-ounce glass teapots have a removable glass tea infuser sold with a votive-candle holder inside the bamboo stand. The Kikkerland teapots have model number TP02 printed on the packaging next to the UPC code. The Cost Plus World Market teapots have a white sticker with number 25024784 printed on the packaging. No votive candles were included with the teapots.
Remedy: Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled teapots and stands and contact the firm for return instructions. Consumers who purchased online will be mailed instructions on how to receive a refund. Consumers who bought the teapots at stores can return the teapots and stands for a full refund.
Sold At: Amazon retailers, Cost Plus World Market, Uncommon Goods and Urban Outfitters and online at www.Amazon.com from March 2014 through September 2016 for between $40 and $70.
Consumer Contact: Kikkerland at 800-727-7151 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or online at www.kikkerland.com.

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W484

Kosher food to be served in UN cafeterias

October 31, 2016: The Arutz 7:

"Israeli UN Ambassador Danny Danon has won the battle for his newest initiative: kosher food will now be served in UN cafeterias."
"His efforts to promote awareness and acceptance of kosher food succeeded, and religious Jews will now be able to eat in UN cafeterias. The selection of kosher food will include dairy sandwiches, salads, meat, tuna sandwiches, and hot dogs."

Israel Envoy Wants Kosher Food at UN Cafeterias

September 26, 2016: The The Forward:

Danny Danon, Israel's Ambassador to the United Nations has written the UN Secretary-General that the U.N. cafeterias offer halal, vegetarian and vegan selections but not kosher. "He also requested that the institution act to lower the high cost of kosher catering at the United Nations by allowing more kosher caterers to work at its headquarters. Danon said that the Israeli diplomatic mission, which only orders kosher food, is limited by the U.N. to one supplier and pays about 40 percent more than other missions who have a choice of caterers."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W473

Religious Freedom? A Judge Bans Kapparos in California

October 21, 2016: The Matzav.com

"In United Poultry Concerns v. Chabad of Irvine, a group of chickens’-rights activists petitioned a federal judge to prohibit a California Jewish organization, Chabad of Irvine, from engaging in Kapparot, a Jewish ritual."
The judge initially granted the plaintiffs’ request and prohibited the Chabad rabbi, Alter Tenenbaum, from engaging in the ritual use of live chickens. Eventually the judge lifted the ban, but only after it was already too late for Chabad to perform the ritual this year."
The legal arguments advanced by the chicken people make it clear that they want American courts to view the exercise of religion as an ordinary activity enjoying no special legal, moral, or constitutional status. The chicken people sued Chabad under California’s Business and Professionals Code, citing a provision aimed at prohibiting unfair competition."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W483
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