A Reader Writes: The Chometz-Being-Sold-On-Pesach Crisis


cakeDear Editor@Matzav.com,

I am writing in response to your post yesterday (here) about a woman in Israel who mistakenly bought a chometzdike item that she thought was Pesachdik. I’d like to let your readers know that this is more commonplace than you might think, and maybe it is time for something to be done. Just this Yom Tov, a Yid in Chicago purchased chometzdike vinegar in a frum store. For such a thing to happen in a vibrant frum community is unbelievable. Everyone must remember to check their product labels even if the items were bought in a frum grocery store in the Pesachdike aisles.

There was another story in which a person went to buy a chometzdike item in a bakery in Chicago because it had the certification of one of the largest kashrus agencies in the United States. “Where was the Pesachdike certification?” the person asked afterwards. It said that the store was kosher, but there was no indication that it was kosher only, and not kosher for Pesach. Basically, the chometz was kosher! The kashrus certificate was still up on the wall, and while most people would realize that bread is bread and chometz is chometz, there are many who do not realize everything and simply rely on the certificate hanging in the store window.

I myself found the same thing in Flatbush, where at least two Dunkin Donut stores – for those who eat cholov stam – have a certification as being kosher, yet are open on Pesach and are selling chometzdike items. Nowhere does it say that the store is kosher but not kosher for Passover. I have no idea how many unwitting Jews, who might otherwise not have gone in there, have purchased real chometz there on Pesach.

It is time for us to demand more oversight in this matter. In my opinion, if a store is going to be rendered kosher and acceptable, there is no way it should be allowed to remain open on Pesach. I don’t care if it is not owned by a Yid or if there is a sign stating as much. Too many michsholim can come from it.

Just this year we’ve heard too many stories. How many more do we have to hear about before action is taken?

A Concerned Matzav Reader

Brooklyn, NY


  1. hashem provded us with the ability to think so we can know that there is a reasonable chance that a dunkin donuts store can be kosher but not pesachdik. It’s an independent chain that happens to have a few kosher stores!! According to your standards there should not be kashrus on any products that are manufactured by a non-jewish company and sold in non-jewish stores, since it’s possible for people to think that if it’s kosher it must be kosher for pesach.

  2. People need to take more responsibility for their yiddishkeit. By the logic of yesterday’s article and today’s post, there can be no vinegar sold on pesach (since it looks exactly like the chometzdik version) and no hechsherim given year-round (since someone might think the donuts are kosher l’pesach).

  3. ” For such a thing to happen in a vibrant frum community is unbelievable. ”

    Well for anyone who lives in Brooklyn you have to know that kasherus standards are many times vauge and confusing. It is incredible the amount of kosher food that is available for us and yet I think we take for granted what goes on behind in the kitchen and just assume all is well. With all best intentions it is all a matter of being competitive and bringing the lowest price possible. Yes we can demand a higher standard and hire more mashgichim, but are we then willing to pay the extra overhead? Or will we jump ship to the competition who is not so strict so that we will save money? So my point in this is that all good intentions aside, it should not be so unbelievable since it is ultimately us the consumers who need to be more proactive.

  4. I live in a small community in the midwest. We do not have any only two butcher shops and no kosher stores/restaurants… we get all our Kosher L’ Pesach items via truckload from New York. We would assume that anyone packing up the truck, and stocking the items from the store would triple check our order but we recieved a case of Chrein and one of them was not marked Kosher L’Pesach. Good thing we realized, because who would think to check?!?!

  5. people have gotten so used to “just take and buy” assuming everything kosher as long as its a heimeshe store.why should pesach be any different to them?

  6. the dunkin donuts in the five towns had a big sign on the front that said “not kosher on passover” baruch hashem for the vaad of the five towns they are so on top of things!