How Does Kosher Certification Work?
‘Kosher’, meaning ‘proper’, is a strict set of food consumption and preparation rules observed by Jewish people for thousands of years. It refers to foods prepared in accordance with Bible-specified Jewish dietary laws.
What is Kosher?
Non-kosher foods include certain types of meat, fish, poultry, and insects, such as horse, pig, rabbit, stork, owl, shellfish, octopus, and catfish. Kosher prepared foodstuffs also require a specific ritual slaughter method. In addition, dairy and meat that mix is not kosher, and should not be prepared, even separately, using the same utensils or cooked in the same pot. Similar rules also apply to grape juice, wine, and cheese production.
Offering a Kosher Product
Understanding and applying fundamental kosher distinctions are clear. However, what happens when products are manufactured using diverse ingredients from various sources? In this case, certification of each ingredient’s source and preparation method as kosher is required.
Supervision includes monitoring ingredients and sub-ingredients and the use of equipment. A trained Rabbi or Rabbinic organization oversees the production and provides a list of acceptable ingredients. At the same time, they also police the manufacturing process to ensure kosher certified adherence.
Why Consider Kosher Certification?
Adding the kosher logo and certificate to your product enhances the appeal to consumers and substantially increases marketability. Kosher certified confirmation is necessary for your devout and health-conscious Jewish consumers and a draw for other segments also looking for certified product integrity, origin, and quality. This extended base can include lactose intolerant consumers, vegetarians, Muslims, and Seventh Day Adventists.
In addition, although kosher certification demand is a niche, it is growing. According to the Orthodox Union (OU), the kosher certifying agency used by Advanced Biotech, the number of ‘OU’ kosher-certified businesses doubles every decade. So, to remain competitive, ensure you receive reliable certification for your product and components for your and your consumers’ peace of mind.
What do ‘OU’ Kosher Symbols Mean?
Advanced Biotech provides kosher certificates with all its ingredients. To help you understand what the included ‘OU’ kosher symbols mean, we’ve detailed the associated kosher indications below:
- A general ‘OU’ symbol means that the product is Kosher (although not necessarily for Passover). It means the product is ‘Parve’ or ‘Pareve’. In other words, it does not contain meat, dairy, or related derivatives and was not produced using dairy or meat-associated equipment.
- An ‘OU-D’ symbol confirms that the product does contain dairy or that dairy-associated equipment may have been used in production. Should you see an ‘OU-DE’ symbol, it highlights that dairy associated-utensils have been used.
- An ‘OU-M’ (Meat) or ‘OU-Glatt’ symbol (‘Glatt’ meaning ‘smooth’ and referring to the flesh of adult herd animals) indicates that the foodstuff contains meat ingredients or derivatives or was prepared using meat-associated equipment. It is kosher certified, although not necessarily for Passover.
- An ‘OU-Fish’ symbol means the product or foodstuff is or contains kosher fish (although not necessarily for Passover). Where the fish content is apparent, that is, the product is a fish or named for its primary fish ingredient, such as tuna salad, the certification symbol may be a plain ‘OU’ or an ‘OU-F’.
- An ‘OU-P’ symbol means the product is Pareve (or Parev or Parve) and therefore kosher for Passover.
So, now that you’re more familiar with the meaning of ‘OU’ certification symbols, consider Advanced Biotech’s ‘OU’ and EU-certified natural flavor and aroma molecules and ingredients to expand your consumer base and improve your bottom line. Please contact us for more information.