Friday, March 23, 2007

Rabbis condemn Pesach price gouging and excessive chumrot

Well, it is that time of year again, so I refer to last year's post on the subject:

It is not necessary to spend your life savings for Pesach. We eat a lot of fresh fish and fresh vegetables; our only major increased expense is for the matzah. (Wheat-allergic folks: there is now a hand made shemurah oat matzah that should be available in kosher stores. We got ours at Riverdale Kosher Market.)

What I found fascinating about the position paper that I hadn't considered in previous readings was this quote:

"Rabbi Rafael G. Grossman, president of the Rabbinical Council of America, called on the public, the manufacturers of kosher products, wholesales and retailers to adhere to ethical practices. He urged those who grant Kashruth endorsements to include compliance with all halachic norms as part of the qualifications for certification and called for removal of such certification for proven violations."

The issue of whether kashrut agencies should be concerned about the ethical practices of the businesses it supervises has generated quite a bit of internet discussion over the past few months. While not taking a position on whether the unethical practices of a businessman makes his food treif, the Rabbinical Council of America would seem to answer "yes" to the question of whether kashrut agencies should concern themselves with matters not directly related to kashrut.


Blogger SephardiLady said...

While I commend the statement, it really is a shame that the Rabbis need to condemn Pesach price gouging. We should know better.

8:29 AM  
Anonymous rejewvenator said...

I don't know if the RCA has taken a public position on the issue, but Vaads across the US have imposed standards on kosher restaurants that have nothing to do with kashrut. I think that part of the frustration is that nobody has lost a hechsher for price-gouging, or withholding wages from employees, but hechsherim have been in jeopardy over the outfits of the waitresses or the presence of a television.

8:48 AM  
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Blogger FunkyJew82 said...

i'm glad i don't really have to deal with this stuff yet. so much easier just to buy a plane ticket to my hometown, and have my parents worry about all that.

4:13 PM  

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