San Francisco's only kosher market is closing its doors, making it the only major North American city without a grocery that sells fresh kosher food.
Israel’s Strictly Kosher Market, which opened its doors 65 years ago and was once a gathering place for the Russian-speaking Jewish community in San Francisco’s Richmond District, will close in March, owner Faina Avrutina told J weekly.
Avrutina told the paper that she has decided not to renew the store’s lease, which came up for renewal this month, because business has been slow and it is too expensive to run.
“That is a shanda. And the worst of it is, we have only ourselves to blame,” J Weekly writes, appealing to its observant readers.
“[Th]e larger Jewish community didn’t support her. We didn’t patronize her store enough, and now it’s closing,” the paper writes.
A handful of kosher eateries still remain scattered throughout the Bay Area, but “the only way these places will survive is if Jews patronize them,” the paper writes. “Even if you don’t keep kosher, you might consider that a kosher retail establishment proclaims the presence of a town’s Jewish community with pride — as well as with pickles and pastrami.”