Dear Reader,
We are now well into the shmitta year and it’s the perfect time to reflect on the spiritual side of shmitta, a time when we take a break from the daily grind and chaos and strengthen our emunah and bitachon in Hashem.

I can’t help but appreciate how appropriate it is that the shmitta year comes right after one of the most challenging periods in recent memory. How comforting it was for us to finally gather in person once again for our annual international Mashgiach Conference, to thank our dedicated mashgichim and rabbis personally for all they have done throughout the past many months to maintain the highest standards of kashrus for every single one of us. Some of the mashgichim spent months in foreign countries and weeks in quarantine and conforming to all of the health rules and regulations for every country and for every manufacturing facility that they inspected just to ensure kosher without compromise. I would like to thank all of our in-house staff as well, for all the remote working, for all the long
phone calls, and for all of the Zoom meetings. We are happy and grateful that almost everyone is back in person in the office.

In this Chanukah issue you can read Rabbi Teller’s article about the challenges of food grade oil production, you can find Rabbi Eidelman’s article and get a deeper understanding of the intricacy and complicated rules and regulations of shmitta, and part one of Rabbi Chanowitz’s article about vegetable infestation.

Wishing you and your families a joyful Chanukah filled with light
and peace.

Rabbi Chaim Fogelman
Editor in Chief, OK Executive Kashrus Vaad