Not a pious Jew? You still might be interested in learning more about kosher food, and on Sunday the author of a new book on the topic will be in town to discuss it.
According to the National Association of Specialty Food Trade (NASFT), sales over the last decade of kosher food in the U.S. continued to grow 10%-15% per year, topped only by food labeled organic. The market for kosher food extends beyond Jewish households observing the dietary laws of kashrut. Seventh Day Adventists, Muslims, vegans, vegetarians, and people with food allergies all rely on kosher certification and transparent labeling to ensure their food choices met certain standards.
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Even consumers without concern for restrictions based on ritual dietary laws or personal food choices perceive kosher symbols to convey food that is somehow cleaner, of higher quality, food that has gone through a rigorous inspection process. Its estimated 40% of the food in American groceries are labeled kosher.
In her book, Kosher Nation: Why More and More of America's Food Answers to a Higher Authority (Schocken), Sue Fishkoff traces the history of kosher food in America, how kosher food is supervised, changes due to industrialization and globalization of the industry, and the blossoming of the eco-kosher food movement.
Fishkoff, an award winning reporter, will address the bright and dark sides of her research at a lecture and book signing Sunday February 20th as a part of the Valley Beit Midrash author event series. We're hoping to hear more from Fishkoff about the "new" Jewish food movement based on the ethical and moral teachings of Judaism that align with concerns for globalization of food manufacturing and support of a clean, sustainable food supply.
When? Sunday, February 20th at 7pm
Where? Temple Chai, 4645 E Marilyn Rd. Phoenix
Cost? Free; book available for purchase and signing for $30