Sunday, March 31, 2013

Faith in L.A. kosher butcher is shaken in wake of video

LA Times   For five decades, Doheny Glatt Kosher meat market has been one of California's preeminent suppliers of food that meets the requirements of Jewish law, offering staples such as brisket and chicken as well as bison, prime steak and grass-fed beef.

But on Friday, the esteemed butcher was at the center of an angry debate that had spread across L.A.'s Jewish community. The owner of Doheny faces accusations of selling meat that was not properly certified under kosher rules. Longtime customers doing their shopping before Shabbat were forced to decide how much they trusted their butcher.

Earlier this week, a council of rabbis pulled Doheny's kosher certification and, in a statement Friday, raised the possibility of "legal action," a recourse to secular courts that would be rare. Other prominent rabbis have stood by the meat shop.

Charges of fraud on the one side have been met with accusations of favoritism on the other, with some of Doheny's defenders suggesting that the shop has been under attack by disgruntled competitors.

In a letter emailed to congregants Friday, the chief rabbi of one of the city's largest synagogues, Rabbi Adam Kligfeld of Temple Beth Am, urged continued patronage of Doheny "because by doing so we can make a statement that kashrut" — Jewish dietary law — "should be about kashrut ... and not monopolies or power plays or raising suspicions." [...]

The controversy started Sunday when a video taken by a private investigator surfaced, purporting to show Doheny workers bringing in boxes of meat late at night without the required supervision of the independent inspector, known as a mashgiach, tasked with overseeing the store. The video later aired on KTLA-TV Channel 5.

After viewing the videotape, the Rabbinical Council of California pulled Doheny's kosher certification.

A group of rabbis also met with Michael Engelman, Doheny's owner. According to the council, Engelman initially denied any wrongdoing but later "admitted to bringing unauthorized products to the store on two to three occasions."

1 comment :

  1. thank you for pointing out the comment. you are correct it isn't appropriate to the discussion


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