What does it mean to be kosher?

According to the Orthodox Union, the Hebrew word “kosher” means fit or proper as it relates to kosher dietary law, which is of biblical origin (Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 17). Kosher foods are permitted to be eaten, and can be used as ingredients in the production of additional food items

Not too long ago, most food products were made in the family kitchen, or in a small factory or store in the local community. It was relatively easy to know if the product was reliably kosher. If Rabbinical supervision was required, it was attended to by the Rabbi of the community, who was known to all. Today, we buy food from all over the globe.

Furthermore, it is challenging to judge the kosher status of an item on the basis of the information provided in the ingredient declaration for a variety of reasons, including equipment used, processing aids and origin.

Ultimately, unless a person is an expert in food production, the average consumer cannot possibly make an evaluation of the kosher status, which is why it is important to purchase only those products that have the endorsement of a reliable kosher agency.

For more information on kosher and kosher certification, please visit the Orthodox Union Website at: https://www.ou.org/

What makes Polly-O String Cheese OU kosher Certified?

It first starts with the milk produced to create Polly-O string cheese. Rabbinic law requires that there be supervision during the milking process to ensure that the source of the milk is from a kosher animal. Following the opinion of many rabbinic authorities, OU policy is that in the United States, the Department of Agriculture’s regulations and controls are sufficiently stringent to ensure that only cow’s milk is sold commercially. These government requirements fulfill the Rabbinical requirement for supervision. However, some individuals are more stringent and only consume milk that was produced with full-time supervision.

Additionally, Polly-O manufacturing facilities have team of kosher supervisors providing round the clock kosher supervision of the production process that oversees the production process to ensure that all Polly-O string cheese meets kosher regulations. Because hard cheese is typically made with animal rennet, the Rabbinic sages decreed that even when animal rennet is not used, a full-time supervisor must be present to guarantee the kosher integrity of the product. Hard cheese produced with kosher ingredients and a full-time supervisor is known as gevinas yisroel.

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