| Dispelling a rumor - there is no
kosher tax or Jewish tax
Boycott watch has corrected
many false rumors, and this one is no different. There are some people who have
been propagating a rumor that the kosher certification symbols found on some
food products are actually a tax or fee for the benefit of Jews or Israel, and
products displaying such symbols are more expensive than products without it.
There is no truth to that rumor. In this report, we
are going to examine each charge.
First, the kosher
symbols are certifications regarding the content of the products to inform
consumers who are interested in abiding by kosher laws that the product is in
fact kosher. This means that the product, in essence, contains no animal
products as defined in the five books of Moses as non-clean, such as pig
products or byproducts, and that the product does not contain both meat and
dairy products in the same package.
adherents to the kosher code are orthodox Jews, but many non-orthodox Jews,
Muslims, vegetarians and other consumers prefer foods that are certified
Second, the fees associated with the kosher
certifications do not aid any special groups or Israel. There is no money as
part of the fees involved by any certification organization that is earmarked
for Israel. Rather, the certification organizations, which are primarily
non-profit entities, use the fees to pay the salaries of the rabbinical
administrators and administrative expenses associated with the certification
Third, in many cases, the certifications
are requested by the marketing departments of the food manufacturers. This is
because in most cases the kosher certification builds sales, thus lowering the
average per item manufacturing cost, resulting in higher sales and profit for
In conclusion, the overall result
of having a kosher certification on products is lower consumer costs and higher
manufacturer profits at the same time because manufacturers are able to lower
their costs by spreading the manufacturing costs over a larger number of items
on a per-piece basis with increased sales due to the added product demand.
There is therefore no Jewish or kosher tax, rather, it is all about marketing
to increase product sales.