Kosher Guidelines

Kosher Guidelines

Under the Jewish dietary laws of kashruth, foods are either "kosher" or the opposite, "treif." Here are some general kosher guidelines:

Foods are categorized as meat, dairy or pareve (neutral, containing neither). Eggs, produce and grains are pareve.

Dairy and meat products must not be cooked together nor eaten in the same meal or within certain time limits.

Only meat from animals that have cloven feet and chew the cud, as well as some fowl, is allowed. No pork. No horse or rabbit meat. No reptiles. No hunted or wild fowl. No birds of prey. No scavengers.

Fish must have fins and removable scales. No shrimp, squid, bivalves or scaleless fish such as eel, sturgeon or catfish.

Animals cannot be fed non-kosher food their entire life. No visibly sick, diseased or injured animals. No scars or punctured organs. Slaughter must be carried out by an approved shochet (slaughterer). The neck is slit, the blood drained.

Consumption of blood is forbidden. Meat and poultry are soaked, salted and rinsed using cold water. Meat is taken from the forequarters. The hindquarters (the home of some juicy steaks) could be eaten only if the sciatic nerve were removed, but this is never done here.

No animal-based rennet or gelatin (affecting cheeses and yogurts). For cheese, the milk must come from a kosher species. A rabbi must pour in the enzyme (substitute for rennet) to set a vat of hard cheese.

Non-kosher filtering agents must be avoided in winemaking. Wine should be kosher from a Jewish winemaker. In a non-kosher winery, a rabbi and team could do the work while the winemaker supervises.

Glatt kosher is the strictest level of kosher for meat. Organs are meticulously inspected and, if defects are seen, the entire carcass is rejected. Kosher for Passover is a stricter set of guidelines restricting various grains, leavened foods and legumes.

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In the past two decades, the demand for kosher food products in the United States and around the world has greatly impacted the food industry, Kosher India has been established to provide kosher certification to Indian industry. Today kosher India is a prominent name across the globe for kosher certification.

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