Meir Gershon Rabi wouldn’t serve this to his children or grandchildren 

Important posting by the administrator (Yankel Wajsbort) of the Ask Kosher Australia Facebook group…

We do not recommend this rennet set cheese. Please see here for a discussion about how to make cheese kosher

Coon & King Island cheeses are made by Lion Dairy – a non-Jewish company – and these mass-produced cheeses would be considered Gevinas Akum. The question is how “It’s Kosher” (the supervising Rabbi) makes these Coon & King Island cheeses Gevinas Yisrael. Normally, non-Jewish cheese companies schedule a special supervised run for kosher cheese with kosher symbol on the label. A mashgiach/Rabbi is present in the factory who will add the kosher rennet to the milk for each kosher batch (this is the opinion of the Shach, as explained in the OU document). We believe that Coon & King Island are made in different factories.

Happy to provide you some information how mass produced yellow rennet set cheese is made. These companies usually manufacture cheese 24 hours a day. Milk is pasteurised and cooled to the right temperature and fed into the cheese vats (at least 8). The cheese vats for cheddar and tasty style cheese (made by large dairy companies) have typically a capacity of 14,000 litres each. By the time that the eighth vat is full, the first one has been emptied, washed and is ready to fill again. Every time the mashgiach would need to add rennet to the milk in each cheese vat order to make all the cheese kosher. Curds from the cheese vats are combined and further processed on the continuous line into large blocks of cheese. Large blocks of cheese are then matured for a couple of months and finally sliced, cut, shredded, packed and labelled, possible in a different location than the cheese making and/or maturing. 

We suggest you ask the agency to explain, when and who they sent as a mashgiach to the factories to add the rennet, in order to consider all these cheeses Gevinas Yisrael and kosher.

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.

14 thoughts on “Meir Gershon Rabi wouldn’t serve this to his children or grandchildren ”

  1. [slightly edited by me]
    I think the link to the OU website says it all about standard practice in the manufacture of kosher cheese.
    Meir Rabi will doubtlessly continue on his merry way, responsible to no management committee, serving his own agenda.
    Unfortunately,there are always people ready to support such people.
    Let us hope no too many people eat his hechsher as a result of the questionable behavior of a Rabbi and his business partner.


    1. And others such as R Moshe and R Elyashiv ate from hechsherim they might not use at home but which had the imprimatur of a reputable Rov so as not to cause any embarrassment. Rav Chaim Gutnick and his family eat and continue to eat from Ungers under his hechsher and then KA. Some Rabonim never ate out of their homes: eg Rav Abaranok


    2. Rav Abaranok, like his Rav Hamuvhak, the Chofetz Chaim, was a Malach HaShem. In his grocery store in New Zealand he had an empty paper bag on one side of the scales and the goods in a paper back on the other side of the scales. He didn’t want to charge for the weight of bags. I know this from my shver who witnessed it


    3. If a Rav HaMachshir gives a hechsher to a product he should eat it.
      Eating in other peoples homes is a different matter.
      We as consumers have the right to pick the Hechsher with which we feel comfortable, we however need to be careful about criticizing other Hechsherim except those who have be proven to be questionable and report to no one.


      1. Qualification of previous comment made on first line.
        ……excluding where a Rav working in a community wide Kashrut body gives a Hechsher to dairy non- Cholov Yisroel but is personally machmir to eat only Cholov Yisroel.


  2. People should know that Mori Rav Soltoveitchik had his own view on cheese but I don’t believe it was accepted lehalocho by the OU. I could be wrong. I have read his view though, as transmitted by Rav Schachter


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