With Rosh Hashana only a week away, Newton residents wanting to buy meat products from a kosher butcher will have to look outside the city, after their only local option decided to end its kosher supervision.
Gordon & Alperin owner Ricardo Bosich said he dropped the food-handling oversight last month. He will offer prepackaged kosher meats, as local supermarkets do.
“I can’t afford the kosher supervision,” said Bosich, who said he is looking for a less-expensive provider. “It’s a hard time for everyone right now, since the economy is so bad.”
A message from Bosich’s former supervisor, Rabbi Aaron Hamaoui of the Sephardic Community of Greater Boston, published on Kosher Blog explains that this “was not due to a violation, but a business decision made by the proprietor.”
Traditionally, kosher restaurants and bakeries maintain their certification by hiring rabbis who oversee the food products that are sold in the facility. Rabbis inspect all canned and prepackaged goods to make sure they have kosher labels and check the origins of meat to confirm that it is from a kosher meat processor. Kosher supervisors are also vigilant in making sure that dairy and meat are not stored together.
“One wants the source of meat and how it is processed to be supervised and certified by experts,” said Rabbi Benjamin Samuels, with Congregation Shaarei Tefillah in Newton Centre. “And for the kosher consumer, that is an absolute requirement.”