Chief Rabbi calls for law to bypass Supreme Court rulings

It is urgent to change this decision,' says Chief Rabbi after Court rules restaurants may declare themselves kosher - without certification.

Tzvi Lev,

Chief Rabbi Lau at Kenes Re'em
Chief Rabbi Lau at Kenes Re'em
Eli Kobin

Israeli Chief Rabbi David Lau urged the haredi parties to legislate a Supreme Court bypass law after a recent decision by the court permitting restaurants to claim that they follow Jewish dietary law despite lacking any kosher certification, Kikar Hashabbat reported.

In a letter to Interior Minister Aryeh Deri (Shas) and UTJ MK Moshe Gafni, Rabbi Lau wrote that "while the Court ruled that the Rabbinate is the sole authority on kashrut (Jewish dietary law) matters, it made another decision that changed everything. It ruled that the owner of a restaurant can present itself as kosher as he sees it, even if he explicitly says that he does not have any kosher certification."

"On one hand, the court gave the sole authority relating to kashrut matters to the Rabbinate. On the other hand, it lets anyone claim that he is kosher, despite the inherent conflict of interest that the owner has in presenting himself as such."

Rabbi Lau contended that "this decision paves the way for fraud. It tell us more about the judges sitting there than it does about legal matters. It is inconceivable that a restaurant owner in the [majority Arab] Triangle region can declare that his ingredients are kosher and that he is meticulous about standards, but can anyone prevent him from doing so? What are the limits of supervision?"

Rabbi Lau implored the haredi parties to change the law, saying that "the public will be misled, and therefore I expect to change the decision".




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