Religion Magazine

Kashrut Fraud Goes to the Courts

By Gldmeier @gldmeier
There have been a lot of cases of kashrut fraud over the years, as well as many honest mistakes, that have left the Jewish consumer inadvertently consuming non-kosher food. It might have happened before, but I don't remember a class-action suit against a company passing off its food as kosher with fraudulent certification logos.
Whether or not it has happened before, it is happening now. A Yeshiva High School has filed a class action suit against a company that produces and distributes sugar for having sold sugar with a fraudulent hechsher.
סימון חותמת הבדץThe packages of sugar did not say "kosher" anywhere on the package, but they did say "b'ishur harabbanut hareishit lyisrael" - with the approval of the Israeli Rabbanut. In addition, the packages also bore the logo of the Badatz Sheairis Yisrael, also without using the words "under the supervision of". As well, the packaging is very similar in style to a different brand, making ti clear the intent to dupe the consumer.
It turns out that the Rabbanut had removed its hechsher from this sugar 5 years previously, the Sheairis says they never gave a hechsher on this, and it is a clear case of kashrut fraud.
The suit is class action and asks for 4,000,000nis to compensate all the company's clients that were defrauded, and it wants the courts to force the company to stop distributing the sugar in this fashion.
The company has denied any wrongdoing and says they hold ishurim from both the Rabbanut and from Sheairis. source: Srugim
I am not quite sure how they can make such a claim, considering Sheairis says they have not given this company a hechsher, and the Rabbanut says they removed the hechsher years ago. It is not a matter of interpretation, either they have it or they don't. One of the sides is definitely not being honest.
If this goes through, and if they win the suit, will we see more lawsuits against companies that perpetrate kashrut fraud?
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