Someone got angry with products that have a Halal symbol

I was sent this for comment (I’ve deleted most of the bits which aren’t relevant and may be legally problematic)

A Halal certification stamp?!?! Seriously???…  It’s bad enough that sometimes I am eating an Australian owned product and I see the Halal symbol, and believe me I try very hard to avoid this ….


Most people would be concerned about the price of Kosher and Chalav Yisrael goods. Those for whom it is an issue (the price differential), with respect to the latter they may choose to rely on the Chazon Ish, R’ Moshe Feinstein, and the Pri Chadash and more to drink today’s Chalav Stam in a civilised country. An answer to prices is often competition.

On the issue of Halal, I have to say it doesn’t bother me in the slightest. I’d like to think that if it increases sales in any way, then this will be reflected in a reduction in price for those who cannot rely (for whatever reason) on those who think there is nothing wrong with Chalav Stam in Australia and elsewhere. They certainly have who to rely on. Those with a Kabbalistic bent have other considerations.

Author: pitputim

I've enjoyed being a computer science professor in Melbourne, Australia, as well as band leader/singer for the Schnapps Band. My high schooling was in Chabad and I continued at Yeshivat Kerem B'Yavneh in Israel and later in life at Machon L'Hora'ah, Yeshivas Halichos Olam.

24 thoughts on “Someone got angry with products that have a Halal symbol”

  1. Isaac,
    you bring the Chazon Ish regarding the permissible eating of Cholov Akum products, please expand.
    I see here in America that the vast majority of the Charedi non “kabbalistic” orientated communities use Cholov Yisroel products supermarket in Lakewood sells Cholov ha Companies.
    Rav Moshe did not give a blanket heter to the drinking of Cholov ha Companies


    1. Expand? It’s Bfeirush, it’s just that the Litvishe tried to hide it. After that, they said he was Chozer. He wasn’t. The Shevet Halevi brings his discussion with the Chazon Ish About it and he’s still with us!


          1. You are kidding me, aren’t you? It’s printed Bfeirish by the Chazon Ish
            Look here for the Shevet Halevi yoreh deah, 4:87
            Try also Chelkas Taakov 34
            And for more see Tzitz Eliezer 16:25

            I can’t imagine why you’d need to call an elderly Posek on something that everyone knows! The Chazon Ish disagrees with the Chasam Sofer and sides with the Pri Chodosh. Nobody is forcing you to keep the Psakim of the Chazon Ish. Rav Shternbuch and others tried to twist the written word but it’s there for all to see except those who don’t want to


            1. Isaac, I know those sources all very well.
              I would like to see Rav Sternbuch’s comments
              I shall be attending a Simcha where both the sons of Rav Moshe zt’l will be participating.
              I shall be asking their opinion on their fathers teshuvah.
              I assume you would see each as a talmid muvak


            2. I will send. I think the number of times I have read what Talmidim and sons have said about that topic is astronomical. I once heard a Rabbi who got Smicha from Reb Moshe read a Tshuva and he whited out the end. One has the feeling that many in the Velt would like to reissue Igros Moshe with the Tshuvos on that topic mostly removed and with a page of Anan Sahadi from the sons, son in law, grandson and then Talmidim muvhokim.


    2. These are just some thoughts and deliberations of mine. I do not know anything about Australian Kashruth. I just came across some Rusks made in Australia. They were CHALAL certified, and had a HECHSHER, certified by the Israeli Rabbinate. They were quite nice and Gluten Free.

      What on earth is Cholov Yisroel? I went quite a bit around the U.S. but did not see Jewish farms or Jewish farmers. There were bearded farmers, but these were the Amish in New-England. Are there Jewish farms in Australia? Do they produce milk? In England no one ever heard of Cholov Yisroel, they were all drinking the milk that the milkman delivered in the morning.

      Just for comparison.
      A friend of mine went to visit a famous bakery in Jerusalem and told me that all the bakers were Yishmaelim. I asked him: “how can this be. Their bread is considered to be PAT YISROEL.” He went back to the bakery, and came back with a reply: The bakers are not Jews, but once a week a Jew lights the oven – this makes the bread and the other baked goods PAT YISROEL (and BISHUL YISROEL) for the whole week.”

      צא ולמד


      1. You are tongue in cheek undoubtedly. You know the Seif in Shulchan Aruch.

        Having said that, I remember in the Chabad Yeshivah I attended, when the Government supplied little bottles of milk for all students, we all drank them.

        I guess they relied on the Chazon Ish


        1. You probably know the story why a Turkey is Kosher. I do not know if it is a story or did it really happen.
          After discovering the new world – America, the Turkeys were brought to Europe. The “Kashruth Commission” of that time did not know if a Turkey is Kosher. Our ancestors did not eat it.
          They decided to send the question to the learned Jews in Turkey. I do not know why not to India. Probably the name TARNGOL HODU was given to the fowl at a later time.
          I do not know how the question was sent. Did they draw a Turkey, or just in writing?
          All the same, they got a TSHUVA: Yes, we do eat it.
          We have to thank the GDOLE HADOR in Turkey for their TSHUVA. Now we can all enjoy our KOSHER Turkey meals.

          I do not know if this could have happened today. I still remember that Peanut Oil and Margarine were KOSHER for PASSOVER for Ashkenazim – not KITNIOT (it is a derivative of pulses). In the 1960 someone in the U.S. decided that they are not suitable for PESSACH – now it is like CHOMETZ for Ashkenazim. Some years ago Canola oil was introduced. Canola is not a KITNIA, but the Rabbinate said that our ancestors did not use it on Passover, therefore we should not use it. That is what we call ” כוח דהיתרא עדיף “.


          1. Our forefathers didn’t have cars or aeroplanes, should we desist from using them and resort to donkey or at least a horse or wagon?

            But seriously, it is this manner of thinking that has lead to Quinoa also being considered ‘kitniyot’. Really?

            Quote from Wikipedia: “It is a pseudocereal rather than a true cereal, as it is not a member of the true grass family. As a chenopod, quinoa is closely related to species such as beetroots, spinach and tumbleweeds.”

            OK so when dried and ground up to a powder it resembles flour, but for that matter so do potatoes. What would we do without potato starch (or even the heilige kartofel?) on Pesach?

            You cannot have it both ways. If things didn’t exist ‘a malige tzeiten’ then the gezeiros of those Rabbonim don’t apply to those things. If so how can these things retroactively become asur?

            I believe electricity on Shabbos is an exception. Not because it is intrinsically asur to use like fire, but because allowing its use would have diminished so much from the sanctity of Shabbos that it would have become like the chol (weekday).

            It is for this very reason that the neviim/chachomim introduced the concept of muktzah on Shabbos.


            1. It is very interesting about the use of electricity on Shabat and Yom-Tov. I have not seen it written but a story is circulating.
              The Jews were complaining about light on Shabat, candles, oils, gas etc. It caused a lot of fires. One day a Rabbi said that soon we will have light. In the new world a fellow named Edison invented a bulb that gives light without fire, just what we need for Shabat. The rest, of what happened with the light bulb on Shabat, you know.
              But, surprising is the matter dealt in אוצר ישראל on the topic of TELEGRAPH. The question asked was: can one use a telephone on Shabat. The answer there is that you cannot use the phone on Shabat, but the reason given was: that the voice goes over the TCHUM SHABAT. There is no mention of electricity, or the prohibition to use it because of electricity.
              I want to mention here that some years ago I was at the then Sefardi Chief Rabbi, Rabbi Amiel ז”ל on a Yom-Tov. He asked his SHAMES to put on the electric light. I was shocked, as we did not use electricity on Yom Tov. Researching it, I was told that it is only MA’AVIR electricity, as electricity is in the electric wires all the time.


            2. Sure and that view re Yom Tov was held by quite a few. All that aside, you still have a posuk of Mimtzo Chefzecho etc and Chazal were worried about the transformation of Shabbos to Novol Birshus HaTorah.

              Note also the view of Dayan Usher Weiss that’s it’s an issur D’Orayso of makeh bepatish. On that basis he assurs led lights


            3. התר נדרים פורחין באויר, ואין להם על מה שיסמכו. הלכות שבת חגיגות והמעילות, הרי הם כהררים התלויין בשערה… (משנה חגיגה א ח)
              To Realistically,
              You say: I believe electricity on Shabbos is an exception. Not because it is intrinsically asur to use like fire, but because allowing its use would have diminished so much from the sanctity of Shabbos that it would have become like the chol (weekday).
              Shabat is about resting מנוחה and enjoyment עונג. Electricity simplifies our life. There is much more energy (work) in swinging a cat (see below) than pressing a button, therefore I do not see any diminishing of sanctity. This is just an observation of what you said, not an opinion on electricity on Shabat.

              Thanks Pitputim for mentioning the LED LIGHTS. Each Rabbi can adopt his own view. One can say that it is MAKE B’PATISH, another that it is BONE, a third: MELACHA SHE’EINA TZRICHA LGUFA and so on. If, for instance, I put a card to open a door, by doing it a LED light blinks, is it MAKE B’PATISH as you mentioned? Maybe it is MELACHA SHE’EINA TZRICHA LGUFA, as I do not need the blink of the LED?

              I want to refer you to a recent Psak Halacha – how to put on the light on Shabat – very useful for the Shomrei Shabos Jews:

              It is not about the curiosity that killed the cat, it is about the SHABAT CAT.

              I would appreciate if Pitputim could copy it and post it here. I cannot do it as it does not accept it from me.

              I do not find that ” Novol Birshus HaTorah.” is applicable here. To which subject does it fit?


            4. The reply in OTZAR YISRAEL about THUM SHABAT is surprising. Researching the matter, I was told that you do not do KIDUSH LEVANA on Shabat, WHY? because it “goes” beyond the Thum.
              If so, why do we do a Bracha on thunder and lightning on Shabat?
              According to the Otzar Israel, if I walk on Shabat to the end of the THUM, and see my friend just a bit further away, I cannot talk to him as my voice will go beyond the THUM (see also on this subject at the link below).

              Some of the TSHUVOS/PISIKEI-DIN at the beginning of the Telephone age you will find here. Surprisingly, nearly all of the Poskim allowed the use of the telephone, the problem was the ringing.


              Realistically, now on the lighter side, just for you:
              The beginning of your reply reminds me of a joke.
              A Moslem enters a cab, where the cabbie listens to western music. The passenger asks the driver to turn off the Radio as the prophet did not listen to that kind of music. The cabbie stops the car. The passenger asks: what are you doing? The cabbie answers: At the time of the prophet there were no cars, please get off my car and wait for a donkey to pick you up. (You can substitute the Moslem).
              One of my Rabbis, Rabbi Schlomo Zalman Euerbach, said:
              “עונג שבת הוא חיוב מדברי נביאים ודוחה חומרות”


  2. how did they try to hid it……! to they bring him in another place? why in your opinion do they all drink Cholov Yisroel today?. I once ask Rav Gansweig who was a Talmid of Rav Moshe zt”l ,he told me that was a teshuvah was for a Rov out of town many years ago and does not apply today in large communities and were CY is freely available


  3. Positivethinkingman

    You once “asked Rav Gansweig who was a Talmid of Rav Moshe zt”l ,he told me that was a teshuvah was for a Rov out of town many years ago and does not apply today in large communities and were CY is freely available”.

    And I once wrote that the difference between Rabbi Akiva and Harav MF is: Rabbi Akiva had 24000 Talmidim and only five of them survived, and harav MF had only five real talmidim and 24000 of them survived, and all of them know what he really thought.

    Instead of telling us what haRav Gansweig said or didn’t say, why don’t you tell us what Harav MF wrote.

    You may see what he wrote here:

    you also wrote: “I see here in America that the vast majority of the Charedi non “kabbalistic” orientated communities use Cholov Yisroel products”, do you also know what is the difference in America price between Calav Israel and the Chalav Stam


    1. In Israel there is just one body that is allowed to give a HECHSHER, it is the Chief Rabbinate. All the others may add their seals but not allowed to say בהכשר only בהשגחת = supervision. You can find products that have a Heschsher for Passover from the Rabanut, but the other supervisory seals might state רק לימות השנה – לא לפסח.
      What exactly is בהשגחת nobody knows. Sometimes the Mashgiach of the Rabanut is also the Mashgiach of the supervisory BADATZ.

      On the lighter side, as the Reader’s Digest used to say: laughter is the best medicine, here is a story that circulates in Israel.

      A Rabbi of the Beth Din of the Eida Charedit is walking in Jerusalem and passes a Chinese restaurant. Looking inside he sees one of his pupils sitting there and eating. As he could not see a HASGOCHO from his BADATZ displayed, he was wondering what this AVRECH is eating. He went closer to the window and observed that he was eating a shrimp cocktail garnished with shell fisch. After the opening course he ordered for the main course, a pork steak with cream. The Rabbi could not believe his eyes, he was one of his best pupils. He entered the establishment and approached his pupil.
      “How can you eat these SHRATZIM and on top of it pork?” asked the Rabbi
      The AVRECH asked the Rabbi in return: “have you seen me ordering the food?
      “Yes” replied the Rabbi
      “Have you seen it be served to me?” continued the Avrech
      “Yes, I did” replied the Rabbi
      “Did you see me eating it?” returned the Bocher
      “Yes, I saw it all” said the Rabbi
      The Avrech looked at his Rabbi’s eyes and said: “If so, than there is no problem. Everything was done under the supervision of the BADATZ of the Eida Charedit.”


      1. I know of a beverage for Pesach from a supplier. The difference between Belz and Badatz was that the former added more water. I kid you not. The money side of Kashrus needs to be community overseen. There is no need for Rabonim to make money in private or group based organisations which are used to prop up those who choose not to work for a living.


        1. You are so right. The question is, does AM YOSROEL profit from it or someone else.

          Some years ago there was a debate about the price of Kosher fowls in the UK. Why should a Kosher Chicken cost nearly double the price of the same chicken slaughtered by a non Jew? The community would understand that the Kosher one should be dearer by a few pennies because of a smaller market for it, but not double the price. The papers argued that many Jewish families would like to eat Kosher, but they cannot afford the luxury of it, therefore Am Yisroel is losing the people that cannot afford it. Should we give up eating Kosher just because someone or somebody wants to gain from it. Which of the two is more important?

          Once in the US I saw Empire Chicken advertising their fowls. They advertised it for all the American consumers, not only Jews. They stressed the health problem saying that the ordinary chicken is approved by the Federal agency, and their chicken, in the nearby fridge, has also the Kashrus health seal. The price of the two chickens was similar.

          Once, while eating in New York I was told by the restaurant owner that their SCHITA is a Chassisische Schita. I asked: What is a Chassidishe Schita? How does it differ from any other Kosher Schita? He had no answer. This took me back to the 18th century that nearly split the Jewish people. The Chasidim claimed that the traditional Schita is not Kosher and by that they wanted to prohibit the communal meals with non-Chasidim. The Chasidim claimed that the Schita is not Kosher as the Shochtim do not use חלפים מלוטשים. On that, a proclamation was issued in תקל”ג against this Chasdic demand (in Yiddish):
          מאכין זיא זיך חלפין ושחיטה דוקא גישליפינה וואס מען געפינט ניט בכל התלמוד והפוסקים הראשונים ואחרונים
          What the Chasidim actually wanted by the introduction of this was do have complete domination on Schita.
          You see, there is actually nothing new under the sun.

          Dining once in a hotel, a couple next to us ordered a GLATT KOSHER meal. At the end of the meal everybody got a fruit soup. The Glatt fruit soup was different from the ordinary Kosher one. I wondered what was Glatt in their fruit soup? I can just imagine – the price was higher.

          Have a nice Shabat שבת שלום


  4. Shalom aleichem / Salam alaikum

    Thank you so much for this article. For several reasons I knew that this was in Australia, but I won’t go into it. I actually only eat halal, because I am a Muslim, however I also respect and appreciate most alcohol free Kosher items. Just like halal, it provides me with confidence that my food is clean. Additionally, if I am unsure of what animals are not allowed to be consumed in Islam, I look to the Kashrut dietary laws to try and find a middle ground. I have tried to avoid mixing meat and dairy, however, it is very difficult. That is something that I admire about Kashrut.

    I run a food blog that helps Muslims find halal and helps Jewish people find Kosher foods. I am lucky that many products in Australia that are halal certified are also Kosher certified – so I get the best of both worlds.

    Thank you for sharing your views, they are very appreciated 🙂

    Peace be with you brother,


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