A new kosher-only supermarket will open its doors in the Russian capital by the end of 2011, courtesy of one of Israel’s largest retailers, the Co-Op chain.
The first large kosher food supermarket to open its doors in Russia, Moscow Co-Op Supermarket will offer only kosher products. The company hopes to follow this store with another one in St. Petersburg.
Among those provided will be the house brand, Star House, and other locally-produced kosher products, as well as some imported from Israel and elsewhere around the world. Israel recently began exporting to Russia tons of special Negev-grown carrots which are twice the size of regular carrots. The carrots, grown in 12 farming communities in the south of Israel, are approximately double the diameter and length of the average carrot.
Kosher shopping has risen in Russia over the past few years. There are separate kosher-only departments in the country’s Utkonos supermarket chain, and kosher products offered in a smaller specialty shop located at in Moscow.
In addition, products certified kosher by the Kashrut Department of the Chief Rabbinate, headed by Rabbi Yosef Verzub, can be found in the Perekrestok and Metro chain stores as well.
“Each year, more and more Jews who are learning about their heritage are switching to a kosher diet,” Rabbi Verzub told the Federation of Jewish Communities of the CIS news website. “Currently there are thousands of people in Russia who exclusively eat kosher.” He added that many others, including Gentiles, also choose kosher products due to their high quality.