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Certification Crash Course: Kosher

The Hebrew word kosher means "fit," and kosher laws define the foods that are fit for consumption for those Jewish people who keep kosher and follow kosher laws. If you're not Jewish, you may have a basic knowledge of the kosher laws: no pork, no shellfish, no mixing meat and dairy. For the general public, we likely take fleeting notice of the 'K' stamp on our packaged foods, but for those who are Jewish and keep kosher, these certifications ⎯ and what they represent  can make the difference between "yes" and "no" at the grocery store. The kosher market is approximately 10 million strong, two million of which are Jewish while the remaining eight million eat kosher for religious (Muslims), idealistic (vegans and vegetarians) or health reasons.

Kosher food falls under three kosher categories: meat, dairy or parve (pareve). To put it simply, kosher meat is meat which is deemed clean, has been slaughtered according to Jewish tradition using specific tools and processed/prepared in a blessed facility or kitchen with dedicated utensils. Meat is never to be eaten with milk products.

Kosher dairy means the product was produced in a kosher facility where dairy products are either present in the product itself or handled at the same facility. If the product itself contains dairy (TeaPops are dairy-free!) the dairy came from a blessed animal. All kosher dairy ingredients are free of meat derivatives. For example, some foods like hard cheese, which may contain rennet, or yogurt, which contains gelatine, would not be considered kosher because they contain animal-derived ingredients. Kosher dairy products have been approved by a Jewish certifying body and can be eaten with a dairy or parve meal that does not contain any meat (see below).

Finally, parve food can be considered "neutral." A certified parve product has not come into contact with meat dairy and has been handled in an approved kosher facility. So, you can have a parve food with a meat meal or a dairy meal.

DeeBe'’s recent recertification from K Dairy to K Parve is great news for Kosher families. Now, TeaPops can be savoured any time of the day, after any meal without a waiting period (depending on the tradition, one may wait anywhere from 16 hours after consuming meat before eating something that was prepared where dairy is also handled). This is one more step DeeBee's has taken to ensure our delicious TeaPops can be enjoyed by anyone, anytime!

References:
Chabad. http://www.chabad.org/library/howto/wizard_cdo/aid/113426/jewish/Why-Kosher.htm
Kosher Directory: Exploring Kosher. www.kosher-directory.com/index.htm