What is Kashrut?
The word kashrut or kashrut (in Hebrew כַּשְׁרוּת) means “correct” or “appropriate”. It refers to the Jewish precepts that determine precisely what foods can and cannot be ingested, i.e., which fulfil the precepts of religion and which are not. Those who comply with the precepts of the Kashrut are called Casher, כָּשֵׁר, (or kosher). What is Kosher? Pure food According to the Jewish laws
Basic Kosher standards
Three categories of food:
1-meat-“meat” “M” (Basarí)
2-dairy-“dairy” “D” (Jalabí)
3-neutral-“Pareve” “Parve” (Parve)
Neutral foods can be consumed along with dairy and Carinicos, it is absolutely forbidden to mix meat and dairy, both in Their preparation as consumption. Both the quadrupeds and the birds must be slaughtered according to the Halakha (Jewish norms). The Shojet (matarife) performs ritual disgorging, called Shejitá, according to the traditional procedure, which consists of several steps; disgorging, revision of the meat (diseases, injuries or defects), extraction of impure parts and viscera, extraction of blood (preliminary rinsing, immersion in water, salting, rinsing after salting). The meat of a pure animal to which he was Shejitá (disgorging) and has passed all control becomes suitable for consumption and receives the certificate of Kashrut.
- It must come from cleaved hoof ruminant mammals.
- Cow, sheep and goat are kosher. It’s not the pig and the rabbit.
- The rear of the animals are not kosher.
- Neither the blood and the lungs.
- Chicken, hen, goose, common pigeon, domestic duck and Turkey are kosher birds. It’s not the ostrich or the pheasant.
- Kosher animals should be slaughtered with minimal suffering and examined by a Shochet.
- They must come from a kosher animal.
- No meat-derived ingredient.
- Only ingredients, additives and kosher machinery.
To be considered kosher, aquatic animals must have the following characteristics: scales and fins. The fish does not require neither shejitá nor salty.
Insects and worms
The consumption of insects and worms is prohibited according to the following relation:
- Shellfish such as molluscs, squids, oysters, snails and the like.
- Flying insects like flies, mosquitoes, bees.
- Insects without wings, like ants.
- All categories of worms.
The wine-making process must be carried out entirely by Jews from the time the grapes are stepped on. Emulsifiers and non-kosher additives Some of the emulsifiers and additives that have some foods are prohibited by containing animal fats:
- Colorants: E-120, 163
- Antioxidants and acidity regulators E-304, 334, 335, 336, 337, 353, 354
- Thickeners, stabilizers, gelling agents and emulsifiers E-422, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 436, 445, 462, 470, 471, 472 (A, B, C, D, E, F, g), 473, 474, 475, 477, 479, 480, 481, 482, 483, 491, 492, 493, 494, 495, 570, 572, 573
- Icing Agent E-904
- Sweeteners E-912, 914, 915, 920, 966
- Coming from the vine E-1105
- They contain neither meat nor dairy.
- Eggs, fish, fruits, vegetables, grains, candies, coffee, tea, Pasta.
- Refreshing drinks.
- Fish: with scales and fins.
- Vegetables and fruit are kosher but require insect inspection.
- The eggs are kosher but they can’t have blood stains.
- Alcohol is allowed.
- During Jewish Passover, Chametz foods, wheat, barley, rye, oats and spelt are prohibited.
- Includes bread, biscuits, cereals, pasta, pizza, beer and whisky.
- Wine and grape derivatives require special supervision from the vine, its elaboration must be supervised by a rabbi.
- The vineyard must be at least four years old.
- The floor should be allowed to rest every 7 years.
- Kosher wines must be processed, bottled, handled, opened and served only by Jews
- It is not permissible for the wine to be seen by a non-Jew. Everything in the cellar is sealed.
- We can use wooden barrels, but stainless steel vats.
- Yeasts cannot be used.
- 1% of production has to be sold for charitable purposes.
The kosher seal received by certain foodstuffs indicates that these products respect the precepts of the Jewish religion, and are therefore considered pure and suitable for consumption. The Federation of Jewish Communities of Spain, through qualified personnel sur-sa la Kashrut in Spain examines from the beginning of the production process to packaging. Efficiently and transparently organized for producers and exporters, certification is the key to promoting export. Spain is a great manufacturer and exporter of food products. The popularity of these products among non-Jews is due in large part to the percep of the Kashrut as a label of superior quality. Kosher products are also required by consumers concerned about animal suffering. In recent years, kosher products have been the most popular, ahead of “natural”, “no additives or preservatives” and “organic” products.
Reasons for exporting companies to certify kosher
- 12 million of consumers.
- Market grew 10% per year in the last decade
- Consumers willing to pay a plus for Kosher certified products.
- Shortage of variety and creativity in the supply of food
- Demand for gourmet and quality foods
- Multinational manufacturers certify their products
Reasons for exporting companies to certify kosher II
- Every day more wholesalers and distributors specialized in Kosher look for Kosher certified products.
- Specialized importers, usually Jewish, look for high quality gourmet products.
- The generalist distribution dedicates more resources to the kosher products.
- Supermarket chains with kosher sections
- Shopping clubs, with kosher products.
- Online platforms with home delivery.
- The HORECA sector.
- Importers require kosher certification.
- Hospitals, airports and prisons.
Who eats kosher foods?
- Jews who follow the kosher diet.
- Non-Jewish religious consumers.
- Consumers for food restrictions or preferences.
- For health and safety reasons.
- Non-Jewish religious consumers
- Seventh-day Muslims and Adventists.
- The Halah diet is very similar to kosher.
- 8-9 million Muslims in the U.S.
- 16% of kosher sales are consumed by Muslims.
- Adventists follow an ovo-lacto vegetarian diet.
- They eat dairy and eggs but not meat and fish.
Consumers for food restrictions or preferences
- In America There’s about 50 mill of lactose-intolerant people.
- Vegetarians account for 38% of kosher consumers in the US.
- Gluten intolerant can take Passover kosher products.
Consumers for health and food safety reasons
- Kosher foods require supervision and additional controls.
- Fruits and vegetables are carefully washed and inspected.
- Kosher foods are closely linked to the ecological and natural by the controls that have to pass.
Kosher certification II
The four most recognized agencies are:
- The Orthodox Union (OU)
- The organization Kof-K
- The OK-organized Kashrut Labs
- The Star-K organization
The Federation of Jewish Communities of Spain has an agreement with the OU.
Most demanded Spanish kosher foods
Retail and Horeca sectors
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Canned vegetables and fish
- Chocolates, sweets and treats
- Fruit Concentrates