VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Nov. 20, 2013) - Apart from their appeal to Jewish consumers, Kosher foods are embraced by a diverse community world-wide. Studies have shown part of that broad appeal is due to the fact that a large segment of Jewish and non-Jewish consumers alike, buy Kosher certified foods based on their belief that they are manufactured to superior standards of food-safety.
Today Kosher certified products are one of the fastest growing segments of the food industry, with annual sales exceeding $200 billion in North America.
This hard-won public confidence has inspired a prominent Rabbi in Vancouver, Canada, to launch an innovative Kosher food certification program named 'Kosher Check.' This new Kosher standard will incorporate, for the first time in history, enhanced food-safety protocol as a principal requirement.
According to Rabbi Avraham Feigelstock, Kosher Check has been designed specifically to inform consumers that the products it certifies not only meet strict Kosher standards, but also, that the manufacturers of such foods have warranted that their operational activities conform to enhanced food-safety protocols.
The Rabbi said the existing Kosher certification program, BC Kosher, has been using client contracts for many years that require commitments by Kosher certified manufacturers that they comply with all applicable government food-safety regulations. "Under Kosher Check," he said, "Approval will be predicated on food manufacturers giving clear assurances they are operating to additional, elevated standards for food-safety - over and above those food regulations mandated by government authorities."
Among the food-safety programs considered benchmarks for Kosher Check are those regarded 'best-practice' by quality assurance authorities and food professionals, world-wide. They include the HACCP program (Hazard Awareness Critical Control Points) as well as GFSI (Global Food Standard Initiative), FSSC 22000 (Foundation for Food Safety Certification) and BRC (British Retail Council), among others.
"Certainly, Kosher Check is intended to be value-added for consumers," said Rabbi Feigelstock, "Since it will provide them extra assurance concerning food-safety," He said benefits will accrue to others, "Like product brand owners and grocery retailers, since both can expect to profit from incremental sales as Kosher Check achieves greater awareness among consumers."
Responsibility for implementing the program falls to Richard Wood, Kosher Check business manager. "The benefits of Kosher Check certification and details of the program are being presented to current BC Kosher certified manufacturers, brand holders, food retailers and new applicants this week," said Mr. Wood. He added that a plan to promote consumer awareness of the distinctive Kosher Check mark - a conjoined capital 'K' and 'check-mark,' with the program name and tag line, 'Kosher Checked. Globally Accepted.' would follow.
Kosher Check, originally known as BC Kosher, is a non-profit Kosher certification agency headquartered in Vancouver, Canada. With regional offices located throughout Asia, Europe and North America, the organization serves over 600 food manufacturers throughout the United States, Canada, the Pacific Rim and Far East. Kosher Check is a member of the Association of Kashrut Organizations (AKO), a not-for-profit Kosher agency, serving domestic and international manufacturers and brand holders, recognized by all rabbinical associations throughout the world.