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Food News


THIS SECTION IS FOR NEWS AND INTERESTING STORIES RELATED TO FOOD, NUTRITION AND FOOD PROCESSING. THEY ARE NOT NECESSARILY RELATED TO KOSHER BUT MAY BE OF INTEREST TO THE KOSHER CONSUMER, MANUFACTURER OR MASHGIACH.

Newer news

Foie Gras Gets Glatt Kosher Stamp

July 16, 2020 from Jewish Press:

"The Chief Rabbinical Council of Israel approved on Monday the importation of glatt-kosher certified foie gras to Israel—an item that has not been non-glatt-kosher in the past."

"A member of the Chief Rabbinical Council, Rabbi Simcha Weiss, together with geese experts Professor Ari Z. Zivotofsky and Rabbi Roei Ginon from Chief Rabbinate, visited a slaughterhouse in Hungary last year operating under the EMIH‒Hungarian Jewish Community Association, headed by Chabad Rabbi Shlomo Köves, to closely monitor the process of fattening the birds. "

"Upon his return to Israel, a team was set up in order to develop a program to allow the importation of goose-liver products with a glatt-kosher certification. "

"On Monday, the Rabbinical Council approved the committee’s recommendations."

"Csengele kosher slaughterhouse in Hungary has become the first (and for now, the only) to receive glatt-kosher certification for goose liver."

"Importers of foie gras will now have to meet a number of new requirements in order for goose liver to be certified with as a glatt-kosher stamp, according to a document detailing the requirements developed by the Chief Rabbinical Council."

"Among other things, it is required that the breeding and fattening farms be located within the same site."

"The document also stipulates that food for the geese should minimize the chances of esophageal injury to the birds. For example, corn kernels should be prepared in such a way so that they would not retain any coarse and sharp edges, or contain any whole grains in the mix. It was also mandated that feeding should be executed through a silicone tube without any sharp points."

"The new regulations also call for supervisors to be made available to carry out inspections at the site of fattening and to closely monitor this process. In addition, slaughterhouses will have to be checked routinely by a mashgiach, a professional kashrut inspector."

"Israel banned the local production of foie gras in 2003, and finally enforced that ban in 2006."

"The Orthodox Union (OU) decided to stop certifying foie gras production in 2019, after the last local kosher producer shut down."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W1053

Include kosher and halal food in emergency coronavirus food programs, senators tell Agriculture Department

July 9, 2020 from the FDA

"Two U.S. senators want to know if kosher and halal food is being included in the Department of Agriculture’s efforts to help alleviate food insecurity during the coronavirus crisis."

"The senators, Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., and Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., who represent large Jewish and Muslim populations, sent a letter Thursday to Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue asking for details concerning the Farmers to Families Food Box Program. In April, the Department of Agriculture announced that under the program, the USDA would be purchasing up to $3 billion in fresh produce, dairy and meat products to be distributed to food banks, community and faith-based organizations, and other nonprofits."

"In the letter, Gillibrand and Stabenow asked Perdue to describe what the Department of Agriculture has done 'to ensure that kosher and halal food are being included in the Farmers to Families Food Box Program, and what steps USDA has taken to receive feedback from Jewish and Muslim communities to ensure their religious dietary needs are met by the program.'"

"The first round of purchases for 32.4 million in food boxes ended on June 30 and totaled $1.2 billion, according to the USDA. A second round of purchases for 695,000 food boxes is set to end on Aug. 31."

"'Americans of all backgrounds and faiths are experiencing increased hunger during this pandemic, and many programs have been put forth to alleviate some of these issues,” the letter said. “However, many in the Jewish and Muslim community only eat kosher or halal food, and have not been able to benefit from these programs if they do not provide these options.'"

"According to Gillibrand’s office, across New York City, Westchester County and Long Island, about 222,000 Jewish households keep kosher. An estimated 51,700 poor and near poor Orthodox households and 144,400 other poor and near poor Jewish households would benefit from the inclusion of kosher options in the Farmers to Families Food Box program."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W1051

Within Expiry of bio aaa Advance Hand Sanitizer 480 mL Due to the Potential Presence of Undeclared Methanol (Wood Alcohol)

July 14, 2020 from the FDA

San Antonio, Texas, 4e Brands North America is voluntarily recalling ten (10) bottle sizes of Hand Sanitizers to the consumer level. The products are being recalled due to the potential presence of methanol (wood alcohol).

AAA Cosmética, S.A. de C.V. is voluntarily recalling all lots of bio aaa Advance Hand Sanitizer currently in US distribution, packaged in 480 mL bottles, to the consumer level. The products are being recalled due to the potential presence of methanol (wood alcohol).

The product is used as a hand sanitizer and is packaged in 1-liter plastic bottles. The affected SANIDERM ADVANCED HAND SANITIZER includes lot number 0530, Expiration date 04/2022. The product can be identified by the label below. Product was distributed Nationwide in the United States.

The product is used as a hand sanitizer and it is packaged in 480 mL plastic bottles. AAA Cosmetica is recalling the following bio aaa Advance Hand Sanitizer lots, all of which bear the expiration date of April 2022:

20DF9001 20DF9002 20DF9003 20DF9004 20DF9005 20DF9006
20DF9007 20DF9008 20DF9009 20DF9010 20DF9011 20DF9012
20DF9013 20DF9014 20DF9015 20DF9016 20DF9017 20DF9018
20DF9019 20DF9020 20DF9021 20DF9022
The product can be identified by the images. Product was distributed Nationwide in the United States beginning in April 2020.

AAA Cosmetica has notified its distributor, who will help notify its customers by phone calls, emails, and letters. AAA Cosmetica is arranging for refund and destruction of recalled products. Consumers/distributors/retailers that have the above listed lots of bio aaa Hand Sanitizer should stop using or distributing the products immediately and mail the products to AAA Cosmetica at the address below for refund:
I.S.C. Forwarder Inc.
8400 San Lorenzo,
Laredo, Texas 78045
(956) 753 0225

Consumers with questions regarding this recall can contact AAA Cosmética by phone +525526281124 or e-mail to customerservice@aaacosmetica.com.mx Monday to Friday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm Central Time.

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W1050

Lidl US Recalls Silvercrest Bread Makers Due to Electric Shock Hazard

July 8, 2020 - from CPSC :

This recall involves Lidl’s Silvercrest bread maker. It is a rectangular shaped white and silver appliance. The bread maker has an electronic display, buttons, and a lid on the top. Affected units have IAN 319996, IAN 304926, or IAN 295433 on a sticker on the bottom of each machine and on the product packaging. ”Silvercrest” is imprinted on the front of the machine. The UPC is printed on the product packaging.

IAN:

UPC:

319996

4056232629744

304926

4251127311401

295433

4251127307961

Sold At: Lidl US stores in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Maryland, Georgia, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York and online at www.lidl.com from March 2018 through May 2020 for between $24 and $70

Consumer Contact: Contact Lidl US toll-free at 844-747-5435 from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. ET or online at www.lidl.com and click on “product recalls” at the bottom of the page or the “contact us” page at https://www.lidl.com/contact-us.

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W1047

TECH 361 Issues Voluntary Nationwide Recall of All Clean Hand Sanitizer and Moisturizer and Disinfectant Due to The Potential Presence of Undeclared Methanol (Wood Alcohol)

July 6, 2020 from the FDA

ITECH 361 is voluntarily recalling 18,940 bottles of All Clean Hand Sanitizer, Moisturizer and Disinfectant sold in one liter bottles to the consumer level. The products are being recalled due to the potential presence of methanol (wood alcohol).

The product is used as a hand sanitizer and moisturizer and is packaged in one (1) liter plastic bottles with UPC Code 628055370130. All Clean Hand Sanitizer and Moisturizer was distributed Nationwide to wholesale distributors and retailers.

ITECH 361 is notifying its distributors by a Notice of a voluntary recall and consumers via this press release. ITECH 361 is arranging for return/replacement or refund of all recalled products.

Consumers/distributors/retailers that have the product subject to this recall should stop using All Clean Hand Sanitizer, Moisturizer and Disinfectant and return it to the place of purchase.

Consumers with questions regarding this recall can contact Corina Enriquez by phone number (888)405-4442 or e-mail at corina@itech361.com, Monday through Friday beginning July 6, 9:00a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (MDT). Consumers should contact their physician or healthcare provider if they have experienced any problems that may be related to using this product.

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W1046

Due To COVID-19: Increased Demand In Tel Aviv For Kashrus Certification

July 2, 20120 - from Yeshiva World:

"The Tel Aviv Religious Council has recorded a significant increase in the number of food businesses seeking a teudat kashrus as a result of financial fallout in the wake of the coronavirus crisis."

"Food establishments, including restaurants, stands and stores, that suffered significant losses during the lockdown, are hoping that appealing to a broader swath of Israel society will help pick up business."

"'The coronavirus has led to a significant rise in demand for teudot kashrus from businesses in Tel Aviv,' said Eldad Mizrachi, chairman of the Tel Aviv Religious Council. 'Thirty businesses already received teduot or are in the last stages of receiving it.'"

"'This phenomenon in Tel Aviv and other places reflects a change of direction for business owners by appealing to a broader sector such as the shomrei kashrus community which constitutes a significant market segment with great potential for all businesses.'"

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W1045

UVT, INC. Issues Voluntary Nationwide Recall of SANIDERM ADVANCED HAND SANITIZER Due to the Potential Presence of Undeclared Methanol (Wood Alcohol)

June 29, 2020 from the FDA

UVT, INC. is voluntarily recalling 38,830 liters of SANIDERM ADVANCED HAND SANITIZER, packaged in 1-liter bottles to the consumer level. The products are being recalled due to the potential presence of methanol (wood alcohol).

The product is used as a hand sanitizer and is packaged in 1-liter plastic bottles. The affected SANIDERM ADVANCED HAND SANITIZER includes lot number 0530, Expiration date 04/2022. The product can be identified by the label below. Product was distributed Nationwide in the United States.

Consumers with questions regarding this recall can contact UVT, INC. by phone (951) 427- 3108 or e-mail to customerservice@uvt.world Monday to Friday from 9:00 am and 3:00 pm Pacific Time. Consumers should contact their physician or healthcare provider if they have experienced any problems that may be related to taking or using this drug product.


Saniderm Products Voluntarily Issues Regional (Virginia, Maryland, New Jersey) Recall of 1 L Saniderm Advanced Hand Sanitizer bottles produced by Eskbiochem SA de CV Due to the Potential Presence of Undeclared Methanol (Wood Alcohol)

June 27, 2020 from the FDA:

Saniderm Products (Saniderm) is voluntarily recalling Saniderm Advanced Hand Sanitizer, packaged in 1-liter bottles to the consumer level. The products are being recalled due to the potential presence of methanol (wood alcohol).

Out of an abundance of caution, Saniderm has initiated a voluntary recall of all products produced by Eskbiochem SA de CV with a “Made in Mexico” origin.

The product is a hand sanitizer and is packaged in 1-liter plastic bottles with an orange twist-top cap. The affected Sandiderm Advanced Hand Sanitizer include lot number 53131626, manufactured date April/1/20, clear bottle that can be further distinguished by looking at the back side label and identifying “Made in Mexico” and “Produced by: Eskbiochem SA de CV”. No other bottles distributed by Saniderm match the description above, hence all products as described above are subject to the voluntary recall. The product can be identified by the photos below. The product was distributed in Virginia, Maryland, and New Jersey on April 15,2020.

Consumers with questions regarding this voluntary recall can contact Saniderm at +1 (415) 562-5502‬ or info@sanidermproducts.com from Monday-Friday 9am-6pm, PST. Consumers should contact their physician or healthcare provider if they have experienced any problems that may be related to using this drug product.


FDA advises consumers not to use hand sanitizer products manufactured by Eskbiochem

June 23, 2020 from the FDA:

FDA advises consumers not to use any hand sanitizer manufactured by Eskbiochem SA de CV in Mexico, due to the potential presence of methanol (wood alcohol), a substance that can be toxic when absorbed through the skin or ingested. FDA has identified the following products manufactured by Eskbiochem:

FDA tested samples of Lavar Gel and CleanCare No Germ. Lavar Gel contains 81 percent (v/v) methanol and no ethyl alcohol, and CleanCare No Germ contains 28 percent (v/v) methanol. Methanol is not an acceptable ingredient for hand sanitizers and should not be used due to its toxic effects.

Consumers who have been exposed to hand sanitizer containing methanol should seek immediate treatment, which is critical for potential reversal of toxic effects of methanol poisoning. Substantial methanol exposure can result in nausea, vomiting, headache, blurred vision, permanent blindness, seizures, coma, permanent damage to the nervous system or death. Although all persons using these products on their hands are at risk, young children who accidently ingest these products and adolescents and adults who drink these products as an alcohol (ethanol) substitute, are most at risk for methanol poisoning.

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W1040

New Irish Government Rejects Effort To Boycott Israeli Products

June 28, 2019 from the Matzav.com:

"The anti-Israel movement in Ireland has suffered a major defeat. Earlier this month, the political parties working on forming the next government in Ireland eliminated a key bill that would have placed a boycott on products produced in Israeli settlements."

"Jonathan Turner, chief executive of UK Lawyers for Israel, told JNS that the bill was 'carefully drafted so as to pretend to be about ‘occupied’ territories generally, but in fact would apply to just one disputed territory in the world, which happens to be the heart of the ancient Jewish homeland.'"

"The bill, he said, was 'blatantly anti-Semitic.'"

"Turner said there was a 'serious risk' that it would be approved by the Irish parliament 'because so much of the Irish political class are hostile to Israel and believe the propaganda defaming Israel.'"

"Had the bill passed in Ireland, noted Turner, 'we feared other countries would follow.'"

"When the bill was introduced in the Senate by Sen. Frances Black in January 2018, pro-Israel group Irish4Israel, with the assistance of UK Lawyers for Israel (UKLFI), took prompt action and pointed out to Irish politicians that the bill would contravene E.U. law. This remained a central sticking point throughout the ensuing debates in the Irish parliament and media."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W1044

Abattoir's cooling system helped spread virus: German expert: Entire Teams Infected with COVID-19

June 24, 2020 - from Medical Press:

"The air cooling system used in a German slaughterhouse helped spread the coronavirus among hundreds of workers, a hygiene expert said Wednesday, a day after the mass outbreak triggered renewed lockdowns in the area."

"More than 1,500 out of 7,000 employees have tested positive so far at the Toennies meat processing plant in the western district of Guetersloh in the country's single biggest COVID-19 cluster to date."

"The plant's air filtration system had contributed to the spread of virus-laden aerosol droplets. The ventilation system is aimed at keeping temperatures at a cool 6-10 degrees Celsius but continually recycles the same untreated air into the room."

" The cooling system was just "one factor" to explain the rapid spread of the virus in the slaughterhouse, and that wearing face masks and keeping a safe distance were key to controlling the transmission."

"Abattoirs have emerged as hotspots of coronavirus outbreaks in a slew of countries, including the United States, France and Britain."

"The technology is there to fix the problem" including "high-performance mobile air filters that remove pollutants or the microbe-killing UV lights that are used in hospital air conditioning systems."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W1043

Belgium Curbing Religious Freedom With Ban on Kosher Slaughter, Top European Rabbi Says

June 22, 2020 - from Arutz 7 :

"One of Europe’s top rabbis has warned that Jews on the continent may no longer be able to consume kosher meat because of legislation targeting “shechita” — the Jewish method of slaughtering animals for human consumption."

"'Shechita is a vital religious practice within the Jewish faith that forms an inherent part of our religious identity, without which Jews would be deprived of the ability to eat meat,' Rabbi Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt — president of the Conference of European Rabbis (CER) — said in a statement on Monday."

"Goldschmidt was speaking ahead of a hearing at the European Court of Justice in July that is expected to rule on the legality of the ban on Jewish and Muslim slaughter methods adopted by Belgium in January 2019."

"The hearing had originally been scheduled for April 21, but was postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic."

"Goldschmidt said that the supply chain of kosher meat in Europe was not strong enough to rely solely on imports."

"'In recent months, and particularly over the recent Passover holiday, which of course came at the height of the pandemic in Europe, the supply chain was simply not robust and many communities in Belgium — and indeed throughout Europe — suffered a shortage of meat due to the lack of supplies,' he stated. “The experience of Passover served as a stark reminder that Jewish communities cannot rely entirely on the international supply chain … Quite frankly, the option to import kosher meat into Belgium is unsustainable and the ban on the practice of religious slaughter is ultimately too restrictive.”

"If the ban was to be upheld, Goldschmidt remarked, the 'message would be clear: Jews are not welcome.'"

"He continued: 'Such a notion is abhorrent and so I implore the judges to look at the evidence in front of them and do not allow the processes to be hijacked by intolerance under the guise of a concern for animal welfare regulations.'"


Highest EU Court to Hold Hearings on Belgian Kosher Slaughter Ban

March 6, 2020 - from Arutz 7 :

"The European Court of Justice is to open hearings into the legality of measures adopted by Belgium’s Flanders and Wallonia regions effectively banning Shechita — the Jewish method of slaughtering animals for meat consumption — the main Belgian Jewish representative organization announced on Friday."

"The court — the supreme authority on disputes concerning European Union law — will hear parties to the appeal on April 21 in Luxembourg, the Coordinating Committee of Belgian Jewish Organisations (CCOJB) said in a statement.:
EU legislation allows exemption on religious grounds for non-stunned slaughter provided that they take place in authorized slaughterhouses."

"The CCOJB said it would present its position during the hearings. The court will be asked to address issues concerning the competence of national governments to supersede EU legislation, freedom of religion, the neutrality of the state and fundamental rights.

"The ban, initially legislated in 2017 to prevent both Jewish and Muslim methods of animal slaughter, has been in effect since Sept. 1, 2019."

The previous item can be cited with the URL: http://www.kashrut.com/News/?alert=W1006
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