Kashrut News Roundup
Apparently, there might be a problem with matzoh baked in a Crown Heights matzoh factory. From the NY Sun:
A handmade matzo factory in Brooklyn is facing questions over whether some of the ritual flatbread it produced is kosher enough for observant Jews to use at Passover seders. At issue is whether a former employee at Lubavitch Matzo Bakery, which each week produces thousands of pounds of round "shmura" matzo, is Jewish.In other Kashrut news, there seems to be some sort of controversy brewing regarding the venerable Manhattan Kosher steakhouse La Marais. Someone who claims to have worked as a Mashgiach there in the past has made claims on both this site as well as this blog that the chef at the restaurant had knowingly sabotaged the Kashrut of the restaurant by putting shellfish in the food, mixing fish and meat, using strawberries which were not inspected for bugs, and using dairy margarine in place of pareve - all which was allegedly brought to attention but ignored by the OU, who provides kashrut certification for the restaurant. The OU, in turn, has put out a lengthy response to the allegations, which can be found here. The story seems to be far more convoluted than what I have put in my brief summary, so if you want more information, go read the sites.
According to some rabbis, matzo used during Passover seders must be made by Jews who utter a Hebrew phrase before rolling each batch of dough. Matzo consumed at other times during the eight-day holiday need not be mixed, kneaded, rolled, or baked by Jews, according to those rabbis.
Last week, a court of Jewish law, the Beth Din of Crown Heights, ruled that while the bakery's matzo is kosher for Passover, some religious Jews should consider purchasing seder matzo elsewhere or from batches baked after the woman was laid off. Passover begins at sundown on Monday, April 2.
An inquiry into the woman's religious background is ongoing, said Yitzchok Tenenbaum, who has been an owner of the Lubavitch Matzo Bakery for more than 20 years. "We told her that until we find out for sure, we couldn't have her working here," he said.