Friday, August 6, 2010

Kosher Conversation - Open on Shabbos

Hi. I was interested in understanding why there are very few hechsherim that certify establishments which are open on shabbos.
Does this create problems with the supervision of the operations at the establishments on shabbos?

Thanks for the question.
Kosher and Shabbos are 2 separate things. Yet there are those certifications who want to appear very strict who combine the two things.
Whereas of course, we want every Jew to keep Shabbos. A Jew being open on Shabbos does not make the food unkosher. There are issues regarding how and when things are made on Shabbos that effect whether a Jew is allowed to eat it or not but it is NOT a Kosher issue and we, in giving our Hashgacha, make sure that all these issues of Kosher and Shabbos are addressed.


  1. You refer to Shabbos and Kosher as being 2 issues. Although this is the case the two things are regarded as very closely linked and difficult to seperate.

    Many Kashrut Authorites will therefore not rely on a person who does not keep Shabbos to be trusted to keep a strictly kosher business especially with the added difficulties imposed by shabbos.
    Do you have a shomer on site on shabbos for the places that are open?

  2. Forgetting for a moment the argument that one who does not keep shabbat may be willing to break other laws, including laws of kashrut, does addressing only what you see as the "Kosher" issues serve the purpose of a hashgacha? For example, if the restaurant owner is Jewish and is in possession of chametz during pesach, it is forbidden to Jews to eat that food even after pesach is over. This is not a "Kosher issue," but the penalty is severe and we tend to be machmir on the issue. When I look at a hashgacha, it tells me that an observant Jews with yirat shamayim has inspected the premises and would be willing to eat there himself--and he certifies that it is not problematic for another observant Jew to do the same. Is this the case for your hashgacha? In the end, I don't care whether someone considers the kosher issues to be ok unless, at the end of the day, it translates into "it's okay to eat there." Respectfully, Moshe Peretz