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MKT Kashrus Alerts, Annoucements & Updates

Suzies Grill has Moved

Please be advised that Suzie’s Grill has moved and the new location is also under the supervision of MKT.

The new address is:

8402 Hillcroft Street, Houston, Texas 77096.
Corner of Hillcroft and Beechnut.
In the Chevron shopping strip.
Phone (713) 729-5741.
www.SuziesGrill.com

Alert: Kosher Catering

 BS”D

11 Adar I 5771
February 15, 2011

When having events and simchas at which food is served to guests, (not including food prepared in private homes), it is strongly recommended that the event be supervised by the Houston Kashrut Association (HKA) or Mehadrin Kashrus of Texas (MKT). This ensures that the Kashrut standards of our community will be observed and that members of the community will be comfortable participating in the event. In addition, we would urge that anyone who attends a simcha, where the food was prepared without supervision, not eat at that event.

Such a standard is especially important and should be required if hot foods are being served or invitations indicate that “dietary laws will be observed” at the event. This includes events with caterers who often work under supervision. 

Even if the food is prepared under HKA/MKT supervision, HKA/MKT should supervise the food at the event to avoid issues regarding kashrut in re-heating and serving. There are many challenges presented in a commercial food preparation and serving environment which well- meaning individuals are unaware of. This includes all levels of preparation, delivery, setup, serving and cleanup of any event. In addition, if the event is on Shabbos, there are many additional halachic challenges that require hashgacha.

If you are serving items from HKA or MKT supervised restaurants or stores that are in the original packaging and you are using paper utensils and plates (i.e. Pizza from Saba's in the original boxes with HKA/MKT stamps on the box), then HKA/MKT supervision is not required at the event.

If an event is supervised by HKA or MKT there will be cards indicating that on the tables. When in doubt, please ask if there is an HKA/MKT mashgiach present.

As of late, there has been a new trend in our community, in terms of catering. Many people have begun to order meals for simchas, that they have at private homes or local clubhouses, where the caterer cooks in their own home without hashgacha. The advantage of this is obviously financial. The caterer is able to avoid a fee for kitchen rental and the fee to hire a mashgiach. Many people have said, “Well if I would eat in the caterer’s home, why is this any different?”

There are two major reasons, why in fact this is different.

  1. There has been an accepted consensus for hundreds of years that any Jew, even a Shomer Shabbat Jew who is in any type of food business, needs to have hashgacha. The reason is that the businessman should not be placed in a situation where he could save himself substantial money by “bending the rules”. Unfortunately, there have been a number of occasions in various communities, where a supposed “religious” Jew fed non-kosher food to the public, in order to make a buck. This is why all Jewish food establishments have hashgacha even if the owner is personally trustworthy.

  2. The proliferation of these “home catering options” undermine those businesses that pay for hashgacha, which in the long run can be disastrous for any community. Accordingly, we strongly urge all those who are interested in the growth of kashrus in Houston, to abide by the above-described minhag and to only use a supervised caterer for any catered event that you have in your house whether large or small.
     

 Mehadrin Kashrus of Texas  | Rabbinic Board of Houston Kashrut Association

 

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