Catholic buying Kosher food

Discussion in 'Community' started by wowser, Nov 6, 2004.

  1. wowser macrumors 6502a

    wowser

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    #1
    Hey. I made a bit of an impluse buy on Hebrew National's Tomato Soup - the packaging looked very iconic :) . ANyway, it is very tasty, but I wondered whether it was in any way offensive or disrespctful for me, a Roman Catholic, to buy Kosher food? Any Rabbis out there?
     
  2. iMeowbot macrumors G3

    iMeowbot

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    #2
    Don't worry about it! Hebrew National is a division of the huge ConAgra conglomerate, not some exclusive religious organization or anything like that. If you look at food labels, you'll find that lots of foods are certified. There's no harm in eating better food than you have to eat :)
     
  3. wowser thread starter macrumors 6502a

    wowser

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    #3
    phew :eek: I can happily chomp away, then? Good news, as it is tastier than Heinz or Campbell's Tomato soup.
     
  4. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

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    #4
    I didn't know that they made anything but meats. The sausages and pastrami are very good but also very expensive. Still, being this far from the northeast, it's a choice.

    I doubt anyone would care whether you're eating special food unless you're at someone's house and eating it the wrong way. ;)
     
  5. Muskie macrumors 6502

    Muskie

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    #5
    MMmmmmm

    And their beef franks rock too. Those hot dogs are sooo good. They taste great no matter how you cook them, boiled, broiled (yes broiled as in an oven/broiler), grilled, even microwaved!
     
  6. wowser thread starter macrumors 6502a

    wowser

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    #6
    the soup is very well priced. I find i have to add too much salt to Cambells, but te Hebrew National one has a nice cinnamon taste, and needs little seasoning
     
  7. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

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    #7
    ConAgra has some good brands. Snyder of Berlin has great Salt and Vinegar potato chips. :)
     
  8. Muskie macrumors 6502

    Muskie

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    #8
    salt and vingegar chips are so good. none of my friend like them, but i can eat a whole bag myself... even if it kills my tongue :p :eek:
     
  9. Mechcozmo macrumors 603

    Mechcozmo

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    #9
    Don't worry about it. Most foods that are certified Kosher, meaning they have a U in a circle or have a K on them, all these weird things for different rabbinical certifications. Basically, different rabbis certify the food by inspecting from beginning to end how the food is treated correctly.

    Most food it is GOOD to know that it is certified Kosher. Then you know that the food is good stuff. Hebrew National hot dogs, for example. There are a number of hot dogs that are filled with who knows what. But with the Hebrew National hot dogs, you know that they are not putting weird stuff into the hot dog because that would make it unkosher.

    If a lightning bolt strikes you tomorrow, well, nice knowing you!
     
  10. wowser thread starter macrumors 6502a

    wowser

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    #10
    haha! He's a vengeful God :D
     
  11. mypantsaretight macrumors newbie

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    #11
    And if you believe that, I have some beuatiful beachfront property in Kansas to sell you.

    I worked in a packing house for 1 year after high school and for 3 years during college. I worked variously as a boner on a ham line, a line leader/trimmer on a ham line and a supervisor on a turkey processing line. I also had some experience on the beef kill floor and in the freezer.

    Some of the materials we produced were "certified" kosher, most were not. All were made following exactly the same process (this is kind of like ice cream made at a plant I worked in one summer, but that's another story). I can clearly remember inspections by state and federal inspectors as well as by rabbis.

    We had these white plastic bins all over the place. They were waste bins. Waste parts that remained even after the initial slaughter (ie. bits o' organs, etc.), meat that fell on the floor, or meat that was otherwise dirty or contaminated was thrown into these bins. Also, at the end of each shift, cleaners would hose off the conveyors of the various lines. Drains were covered with filters to catch meat washed away at these "cleanings" and that meat was also placed in the waste bins.

    At the end of each shift, the waste bins were to be dumped into covered refuse chutes for removal from the facility. In my 4 years of working at the plant I can state that I never saw a single waste bin emptied into a refuse chute. As to what happened to the waste, well.... I'll leave that to your imagination.

    So bite right into that kosher hot dog and slurp that kosher soup with.... confidence.

    peace

    ps. The ice cream details in brief. We made multiple kinds of vanilla ice cream on one line... ranging from the big discount gallon plastic containers to the pints of "fancy" (expensive) types. Note to consumer: it was all the exact same ice cream, we just switched the containers it was being poured into.
     
  12. homerjward macrumors 68030

    homerjward

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    #12

    eww....
    btw, what ice cream plant was this (if you can tell without the whole men in black suits and dark glasses at one in the morning thing)? cause ive noticed that h-e-b (a grocery store around here) premium ice cream tastes the same as cheap crap, but like dreyers premium tastes better than regular. and being a boner on a ham line just sounds like wrong...
     
  13. Mechcozmo macrumors 603

    Mechcozmo

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    #13
    1. Ham is not kosher! No matter what! And a rabbi would not have ham being processed near other foods. Unless that rabbi was off on a branch somewhere... anyway. A beef kill floor? An animal must be killed a certain way. There are quite few kosher slaughter houses, because of the amazing restrictions on how to kill and what you may take out of an animal. To name a few:
    The animal must be killed in one stroke across the neck, and the animal must be in as little pain as possible.
    Then a certain vein is removed to make more of the animal kosher. The animal must be drained of blood.
    Only then is the raw material kosher. You must remove the blood vessels, BTW, otherwise all is for moot..

    There is a large amount of doubt in me... mind telling us where you worked?
     
  14. Flowbee macrumors 68030

    Flowbee

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    #14
    Professional boner, eh? You might want to leave that one off of the resume. :p
     
  15. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

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    #15
    Well, it also sounds as if they made ice cream in the same place. I don't know for certain, but I don't think that you can make ice cream from ham, beef, or any other kind of meat. :D
     
  16. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #16
    That one was so obvious that I didn't even bother with that one. :p

    And I don't really get the part of the story where you said that you/someone was supposed to dump the contents of the waste bins into the refuse chutes each night, but nobody did. If that was supposed to happen, but didn't, then was it used in food? That would be pretty gross.

    And if the waste bin was supposed to be emptied, but was not, then maybe it isn't considered appropriate practice by the factory or food manufacturers? The way you're saying it, it sounds as if this was acceptable practice, but if someone was supposed to dump it, then obviously it wasn't supposed to be used in food (right?). :confused:

    And I have eaten kosher chewing gum. I also heard that Coke was kosher, but that may all be b.s. ;)
     
  17. Mechcozmo macrumors 603

    Mechcozmo

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    #17
    I hope you didn't swallow the gum, but instead chewed on it?

    Coke, as in the street drug, is not kosher.
    Coke, as in Coca Cola, is kosher. There are hebrew branded cans, along with Pepsi. Google search results But the sites are down, so I cannot show you the real picture. Grrrr...
     
  18. mypantsaretight macrumors newbie

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    #18
    I did not mean to imply that all of the meat we made was certified as kosher, I tried to state that but I guess it didn't come out right. The beef kill floor was not kosher, (nor obviously were the ham lines). However one of the beef lines was as was one of the processed beef lines. Those were physically separated by a semi-covered walkway (50 yards or so) from the ham section, but only by movable partitions from the non-kosher turkey line and elements of the non-kosher beef lines. The waste buckets were shared...

    The plant I worked at employs over 3000 workers at a non-union location consisting of literally dozens of buildings stretching over several acres. As to specifically where I worked, I'll say no more than it was in the midwest. I worked for these people and some of my friends still do. I say that knowing the lengths they go to when it comes to keeping this stuff to themselves.

    Examples of the waste bins... When leaving certain sections my boots would have dirty meat bits on them. I'd grab a cleaning hose and spray them off. That would go in the waste bin. Assorted variations of that theme made up much of the waste bins as well as bits of stomach, liver, kidney, etc. that came of the trimming lines. The bins are a health requirement...bad meat has to go somewhere. They are supposed to be discarded and most certainly are not to be put into the processed food. That being said, every pound of product that left the plant was more profit....

    Waste bin handling was carried out by the direct orders of the section manager. The amount of refuse generated was closely monitored and if it exceeded certain amounts the result was you would get fired.

    I still remember with disgust one day when as a bonus, the section manager served an assortment of sausages, hot dogs, etc. to each shift during lunch break as a "reward" for hard work. This was done once in my time there as it didn't go well. At that time I was a line leader. I (and others) were ordered by the section manager and one of the plant assistant managers to eat the food (for some reason noone would eat the food) and encourage our subordinates to do the same. That was one day I wished I was bulemic.

    The ice cream plant was in the northeast. But there, like at every factory I have ever worked at, I had to sign confidentiality agreements as a part of my employment agreement.

    I am not a vegetarian by any means and I eat ice cream. That being said I buy all of my meat from local butchers (not chain grocers) who buy whole beef/pork/etc. from reputable farms and butcher the meat themselves. The only ice cream I buy is B&J since I knew a friend who worked for them and she indicated it was ok. Other brands probably are too, but once you've worked in these places you find yourself being a bit more careful.

    I guess my point is that just because something is certified as kosher or just edible doesn't mean alot in certain places. If I didn't know someone personally who worked in a particular processing plant (meat/other food) -- I wouldn't touch it with a ten foot pole, especially if it was a non-union shop (whistleblowing only gets you fired if you have no union).

    peace
     
  19. mypantsaretight macrumors newbie

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    #19
    Lol, yeah I tried to think of how to word that. But that's what you call yourself in the plant so I figured I'd just use the term and spread a bit of amusement. :)
     
  20. strider42 macrumors 65816

    strider42

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    #20
    Bazooka Joe is Kosher chewing gum. Probably most is. Kosher for non animal products is not difficult, so a lot of companies spend the little bit of extra money to cerify their products as kosher, so they can sell to the observant jewish market. Every day you're probably eating loads of kosher certified products. Companies don't make food kosher just to cater to the jewish market, so there's nothing offensive to anyone about eating it as well. These are huge major companies just trying to prevent themselves from not being able to sell to a pretty sizeable population.
     
  21. Mechcozmo macrumors 603

    Mechcozmo

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    #21
    If the line was used to process unkosher meat, then you cannot process meat on it and claim it to be kosher. Just washing it off will not mean you can then produce kosher food on it. There is a very long, very boring process and different rabbis have different views on how to make things clean...

    An Orthodox rabbi would never certify your plant simply because you produce pork products there. A Reform rabbi usually doesn't have the qualification to certify a place kosher, due to belief differences in Judaism. So it would seem a Conservative rabbi would, maybe, but the tests are usually extremely strict. I'll stick to eating steaks and the occasional hot dog...

    Just wondering, how much dirt from the bottom of your foot would it take to make one hot dog?
    Don't answer that... ;)
     
  22. Wyvernspirit macrumors 6502a

    Wyvernspirit

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    #22
    I find campbell's adds to much salt to the soup to begin with, but thats just me. I don't add salt to anything and will regularly get unsalted products unless i find it very bland (very rarely).
     
  23. wowser thread starter macrumors 6502a

    wowser

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    #23
    I'm a bit of a salt addict, actually. I am using a low soudium salt currently, but it tastes wrong. :(
     
  24. Wyvernspirit macrumors 6502a

    Wyvernspirit

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    #24
    My Fiance and her mother use a ton of salt (thank god they don't add it during the cooking/baking process). Her mother uses more, we joke that if you better have two salts on the table because if you try to take it from her you will lose an arm. :D
     

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