Cholov Yisroel Market Soars, Largely Due to Natural Growth

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milkWhen Elias Weinberger launched Mehadrin in 1950, only a small number of holocaust survivors and other Jews exclusively consumed Cholov Yisroel (process of producing dairy products that is supervised by a rabbi) products. Today, the company is managed by the third generation of Weinbergers and three other partners with sales approaching $40 million.

According to the Mehadrin Web site, the company today has gone far beyond its original line of cottage cheese and sour cream to include “handpicked cheeses from Switzerland and premium ice cream from Belgium, frozen desserts from Israel, Canada, and other countries around the world.”

Unlike the mainstream kosher market which has benefitted from a large crossover of non-traditional kosher consumers, Cholov Yisroel producers like Mehadrin have largely grown thanks to the extraordinary growth of Orthodox Jewry, including the Chasidic world.

In many communities like Lakewood, Monroe, and Monsey, the population has more than doubled since 1995, accounting for the success of companies like Mehadrin, Haolam (World Cheese), and Klein’s to name but a few. Retailers estimate that sales of Cholov Yisroel have also more than doubled since the mid ’90’s with annual growth averaging at 17%. Nor have companies like Mehadrin and Klein’s stuck to their original product line. Mehadrin owns and/or distributes such brands as J&J (one of the original cholov yisroel milk companies along with Kahal and Balsam) and Givati. It has even partnered with Dannon (in a private label venture), Elan Frozen Yogurt, and Nestle (Israel).

“We are constantly adding new products with a focus on quality and health,” says Avigdor Weinberger, grandson of one of the founders. In addition to its broad line of dairy products and frozen desserts, Mehadrin distributes such items as Bagel Pizza, Iced-Cappuccino, and even Similac. Distribution for the Cholov Yisroel companies today includes most major US markets, Europe and South America. There are pockets of Cholov Yisroel consumers in all of these markets with significant sales in such cities as Chicago, Los Angeles, and Miami. One distributor estimated that some 65% of Orthodox Jews today consume Cholov Yisroel products. “Their grandfathers might have simply eaten kosher dairy and not the higher standard Cholov Yisroel,” he said.

{Kosher Today/ Newscenter}


  1. but their bagel pizza is not mehadrin! its chodosh – which is a more severe doraysa [see this - – it opened my eyes]- not like cholov yisrael which at most is a derabbanan!

  2. And another good reason – the cost of chalav Yisroel has come way down. It used to be that keeping a family of six kids in chalav Yisroel milk would break the budget. Now it’s affordable. While many Yidden in the US hold by R’ Feinstein’s psak that in the US chalav stam is OK, for those that do keep this the drop in price was a brachah.

  3. Please be honest. Cholov Yisrael means that a religious Jew was present during the milking. Even non-cholov yisrael products have rabbinic supervision (those with a hashgacha). I would like to point out that in Canada, the late Max Singer, zichrono l’vracha, (whose yahrzeit was last week) founded North End Milk Products, which was the first Cholov Yisrael company ever in Canada. It later became known as Mehadrin (no relation to Mehadrin in the U.S.)

  4. Its funny the title of the article has “natural growth” in it when there are more chemicals in cholov yisroel milk than Chernobyl.

  5. #1 – most Ashkenazim hold that for those in chutz la’aretz chodosh in our times is a chumrah. For those who wish to keep, fine. For those who don’t, they don’t. To the best of my knowledge Sefardim keep under all circumstances. Consult your local Orthodox rabbi, as the saying goes.

  6. #1 There is another approach. Cholov Yisroel is something most of our grandparents were makpid on. Yoshon is something they were not makpid on. The Bach and other achronim address why the velt isn’t makpid on Yashan. Noone from the past generation did the Derabanan/Deoiraiysa test. They followed Mesora instead. While it is very Choshuv that people started being makpid on Yashan, you would be surprised that the Bach drank Cholov Yisroel (Derabanon) yet wasn’t makpid on Yashan (Deoiyraisa).


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