The COVID-19 pandemic has spread to every part of the world and nobody was left unaffected. I sincerely hope that you and your loved ones are doing well. At the OK we have certainly seen and felt the wrath of this pandemic, both on a personal level and on a professional level as a global leader in kosher certification. Knowing how crucial kosher certification is to the kosher consumer, we continue, with Hashem’s help, to make every effort to adapt to the present and, Baruch Hashem, we are successfully living up to the challenge.
I am thankful that, as a global kashrus organization, we recognize the siyata d’shmaya in everything we do. We, Baruch Hashem, have strong leadership and good teamwork, clear protocols, vast experience, and we are blessed with a tremendously devoted staff. The OK has some of the world’s foremost experts in kosher, who live and breathe kosher and who have made high level kosher supervision their life’s mission. Moreover, at OK Kosher we are fortunate to have relationships with health experts and local authorities worldwide. Our Rabbonim and leaders are in constant contact with them to make sure that both our kosher procedures and local safety policies are kept in place and not compromised.
After a challenging few months of quarantine, where we made good use of the latest technologies through constant Zoom meetings (with sometimes as many as 300 participants!) and FaceTime discussions, it is so comforting to see our staff physically trickling back into the office, complete with face masks and social distancing. You can find our lights on until the late hours of the night as dedicated employees come in to attend to their essential work at all hours of the day and night to ensure kosher without compromise.
Of course, our offices will never be the same without Rabbi Levy, OB”M; his mere presence, even the way he walked down the hall greeting each staff member with a smile, is sorely missed by all of us. We are comforted by keeping his legacy alive and continuing to uphold his high kashrus standards. We are going to be reprinting some of his past articles on kosher in the pages of the Kosher Spirit. It’s reassuring to see that, slowly but surely, the kosher standards that Rabbi Levy wanted to see become mainstream are becoming part of the standards of many reputable agencies.
One last note as we get ready for Rosh Hashanah. We must realize and remember that all that happened this past year to us, to our communities, and to the world at large, was decided last year on Rosh Hashanah. May all of our prayers be answered on Rosh Hashanah this year, for long life, good health and the ultimate blessing of the coming of Moshiach speedily in our time.
Wishing you and your family k’siva v’chasima tovah, l’shana tovah u’mesukah. May you be written in the Book of Life for a happy and sweet year.
Rabbi Chaim Fogelman
Editor in Chief
OK Kosher Vaad HaKashrus