Community Kashrus
Greater Philadelphia

The Keystone K

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Kashrus Updates & Alerts

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Keystone-K – Nana’s Kitchen at the JCC – Great News!

August 27, 2019

Keystone-K – Nana’s Kitchen at the JCC – Great News!


IY”H beginning  September 2, 2019 Nana’s Kitchen at the JCC (Haverford Road and City Avenue, Wynnewood, PA) will be both Pas Yisroel and Cholov Yisroel.  The ovens and utensils will meet Cholov Yisroel requirements as well.


Nana’s will be closed on Sunday, September 1, to kasher from standard kosher to Cholov Yisroel.


Nana’s Kitchen catering will also be Cholov Yisroel/Pas Yisroel.


The hours of operation will be:

Sunday 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Monday-Thursday 8:00 AM – 7:00 PM

Friday 8:00 AM – 3:00 PM









“Pick Your Own” and other alerts

August 16, 2019

Keystone-K appreciates that our sister agencies generously share their knowledge base.  The following are a number of alerts that may be of interest to you:

It is recommended that corn on the cob should be unhusked and washed well before cooking, microwaving, or grilling.

Pick your own and organic blueberries have a higher rate of infestation than regular store-bought blueberries.  These blueberries should be washed very well with dish detergent, rinsed with a powerful spray, and then rinsed and inspected for signs of worms etc.  We also recommend checking the last rinse water with a thripe cloth.  This procedure should be used for all strawberries – even regular store bought strawberries.  Regular store-bought blueberries that show no signs of infestation just need an ordinary washing and then they can be eaten.  Thripe cloths can be purchased from Rabbi Eisemann, and may be reused numerous times.

When you pick your own fruit, it must be ascertained that fruit trees have reached their fifth year (since planting/transplanting) because of the laws of “orla” and revai”.  No benefit may be derived from “orla” and “revai”.  Please see our archived article for a more in-depth explanation on this topic – including the difference in halocha between fruit grown in Israel and other localities.

Joy Cone products that appear to be Parve, but bear the Star-D symbol (Baltimore) were produced on Dairy non-Cholov Yisroel equipment.

The Star-K has sent an alert that the Letter of Certification from Zhejiang Zhonga Technical from China is a forgery.

“Sabra Dipping” and “Sabra Food” are two Different Companies

July 18, 2019

“Sabra Dipping” and “Sabra Food” are two Different Companies

From The Vaad of Greater Detroit: Sabra Dipping Co. Guacamole with Tostitos Rolls Tortilla Chips

Please be aware that Sabra Guacamole with Tostitos Rolls Tortilla Chips does NOT bear the O/K and Rabbi Weissmandl certification that appear on most other Sabra Dipping Co. products and is NOT recommended.

From the Vaad of Greater Detroit: Sabra Food Products, Norwood, Ma

Sabra Food Products (manufactured by International Food Products, Inc), including Hummus, Baba Ghanoush, Tahini Sauce, Tabouli, Black Bean & Wheat Pilaf, Grape Leaves, Cracked Wheat Salad and Mediterranean Salad bear an unauthorized KVH kosher symbol.

PLEASE NOTE:  Sabra Food Products from Norwood, Ma is NOT affiliated with Sabra Dipping Co., White Plains, N.Y., which remains under OK/Rabbi Weissmandl certification for most of its hummus and guacamole products.

View All Alerts

Keystone-K – Nana’s Kitchen at the JCC – Great News!

August 27, 2019

Keystone-K – Nana’s Kitchen at the JCC – Great News!


IY”H beginning  September 2, 2019 Nana’s Kitchen at the JCC (Haverford Road and City Avenue, Wynnewood, PA) will be both Pas Yisroel and Cholov Yisroel.  The ovens and utensils will meet Cholov Yisroel requirements as well.


Nana’s will be closed on Sunday, September 1, to kasher from standard kosher to Cholov Yisroel.


Nana’s Kitchen catering will also be Cholov Yisroel/Pas Yisroel.


The hours of operation will be:

Sunday 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Monday-Thursday 8:00 AM – 7:00 PM

Friday 8:00 AM – 3:00 PM









5778 – 2018 – Stores from which Chometz may be purchased after Pesach:

May 1, 2019

Updated 5/2/2019 based on the latest information shared by the major kashrus agencies.  Please visit this site to check for updates.

Where Chometz May be Purchased after Pesach

Please use our web-site to keep up to date.

We have received queries about Target.  The status of Target has been changed to problematic.

Stores from which Chometz may be purchased after Pesach:

Wine and liquor stores in Pennsylvania are owned by the state.  Therefore, “chometz” drinks which have no Kashrus or other concerns may be purchased at Pennsylvania State Stores immediately after Pesach.  Retail outlets that sell wine and beer and beer stores are not “State Stores”.  Bourbon from the Sazerac Distillery is questionable because of distillation and aging under Jewish ownership.  You can go onto the Sazerac website to see which brands of Bourbon they produce.

Chometz may be purchased at any Keystone-K establishment.

Supermarkets and national chains are not considered Keystone-K establishments, but follow the following guidelines:

Chometz may be purchased after Pesach at KFM (Kosher Foods and More), House of Kosher (HOK), ShopRite Roosevelt Blvd. and the following national chains :  A & L (supplier), Albertson’s, Aldi, Big Lots, BJs, CVS,  Costco, Dollar Tree, Food4Less, Food Lion, K-Mart, Petco, Petsmart, Restaurant Depot, Rite-Aid, Royal Farms, Safeway, Sam’s Club, Shopper’s Food Warehouse, Save a Lot, Trader Joe’s, Walgreens, Walmart, Wegman’s,  and Whole Foods.

In addition to this the following stores in the Greater Philadelphia area are OK: All Giants of the Ahold Group (this includes all Philadelphia area Giants – suburbs included), Wawa, The Fresh Grocer on Walnut and 40th Streets, and ShopRite Roosevelt Blvd.  This does not apply to Giants in other areas of the country which are under different ownership.

Acme Markets now have significant Jewish ownership.  The OU took care of selling the “chometz” for all Acme Markets.  Therefore, one can shop at all Acme Markets immediately after Pesach.

Quick turnover items (like bread, cake, and bagels) may be purchased at any major store two weeks after Pesach.  Slower turnover items (like hard pretzels and pasta) may be purchased four weeks after Pesach.

Food items which may contain kitniyos or an insignificant amount of Chometz may be purchased at any store after Pesach.

Kosher for Pesach 2019 – Tequila

April 18, 2019

KA Kosher of Mexico KFP Tequila List The following are Kosher for Passover under KA-Kosher (Rav Hamachshir Rav Chaim Cohn shlit”a) no symbol required

 Please note : Roca Patron Anejo is not approved as it is aged in Bourbon casks


Herradura Gran Imperio Reposado

Antiguo Herradura Añejo

Antiguo Herradura Blanco/Silver

Antiguo Herradura Reposado

Hacienda l Cristero

Herradura Añejo

Herradura Blanco/Silver

Herradura Gran Imperio Reposado Herradura Plata Blanco/Silver Herradura Reposado

Herradura Selección Suprema Extra Añejo



Gran Patron Platinum

Roca Patron (Roca Patron Anejo is not approved as it is aged in Bourbon casks)

Gran Patron Smoky

Gran Patron Platinum

Patron Silver


El Jimador

El Jimador Añejo

El Jimador Blanco/Silver

El Jimador Reposado


Don Eduardo

Don Eduardo Añejo

Don Eduardo Blanco

Don Eduardo Reposado



KFP Sotol (Mezcal)  List


Hacienda Chihuahua

Hacienda Chihuahua Rustico

Hacienda Chihuahua Platinum Hacienda Chihuahua Silver O Plata Hacienda Chihuahua Añejo

Hacienda Chihuahua Añejo Oro Puro

Hacienda Chihuahua H5

Fiesta Chihuahua


Assorted Brands

Hacienda Xalpa Blanco/Silver

Los Pilones Blanco/Silver

Dos Lunas Blanco/Silver

Blue  Don Cesár García Blanco/Silver Oro Viejo Blanco/Silver

Río  Plata Blanco/Silver

Tierra Viva Blanco/Silver

Reserva l Señor Blanco/Silver

Don Diego Santa Blanco/Silver Herencia  Plata Blanco/Silver Blanco EG El General Blanco/Silver

Embajador Jaliscience Blanco/Silver

Blanco Embajador Blanco/Silver Blanco Viejos Amigos Blanco/Silver

Keystone-K Kosher for Passover Establishments

April 1, 2019

Kosher for Pesach Food Available at Local Establishments

The contact information for each establishment can be found under “ESTABLISHMENTS”

The following is a list of establishments under Keystone-K supervision that offer Kosher for Pesach items as described.  Unless clearly stated, our supervision is Kosher for Pesach for both Ashkenazim and Sefardim.

Savvati Caterers is planning to offer a Pesach menu for sale and also “sit down”.  Please watch for details.

Chef Daniel Israel will be offering a non-Gebrachts Pesach menu.

Mikveh Israel is planning to offer a Keystone-K Pesach menu.  All Matza and most other items will be Kosher for Pesach according to both Sefardi and Ashkenazi traditions.  All items that contain Kitniyot (legumes) will be clearly marked “Kitniyot/Sefardi”.  Unless marked Keystone-K Sefardi, all foods will be prepared on non-kitniyot utensils and will be appropriate for use according to both the Sefardi and Ashkenazi traditions.

The universities (Penn, Temple, and Drexel) will offer a Pesach menu under Keystone-K supervision.  Only properly packaged and sealed items are supervised at Drexel.  Once the seals are broken the food is no longer supervised by the Keystone-K.  This applies both during Pesach as well as the rest of the year.

Kosher Crops will produce pre-checked vegetables for Pesach.

Palace Royale will be open for limited business.  They will also provide Kosher for Pesach government program meals.

House of Kosher, Giant Wynnewood & Rockledge (Abington), and Shoprite Roosevelt Blvd. carry many Kosher for Passover items.

We will IY”H keep you informed if additional Keystone-K establishments join the Pesach list.

Pesach Information – (Shopping with your Eyes Wide Open)

1-  Many stores carry products with kitniyos (“legumes”) or egg matzah.  Please check ingredients and follow your custom.  These items are a great convenience for the days before Pesach, as you can give them to your children to eat and you don’t have to worry about them leaving the crumbs around the house.  Even those people who do not eat kitniyos / egg matza on Pesach do not need to sell these products before Pesach.

2- It is advisable to double check that items which you find in the Passover section are actually kosher for Pesach.  Sometimes clerks or customers return similar looking items to the wrong shelf.  This is the issue that has the greatest potential for causing serious Pesach halocha concerns.

3- Check the certification even on familiar products.  Many products are certified by a different agency for Pesach than during the rest of the year.  Many product from Eretz Yisroel carry two or more supervisions.  Check that there isn’t a disclaimer (in Hebrew) stating that the supervision you rely upon is not valid for Pesach.

4- Many Products are sold in the same packaging as they are the rest of the year.  The only difference is the Passover symbol.  Check symbols carefully.

5- Some companies change ingredients just for Pesach, such as leaving out the peas from a soup mix for Pesach – without changing the ingredient listing.   I believe that this is irresponsible and causes much confusion.  If you are concerned about this I suggest that you speak to the supervising agency.

6- Many general supermarkets all over the USA sell “Passover Shank-bones” for the Seder plate.  Store owners and managers are not necessarily aware of or concerned about Kashrus issues.  Unless the shank-bone is sealed and marked by an agency you trust, or unless it is given to you directly by a Mashgiach or his representative you should assume that it is not kosher.

7- Many Passover-style products are offered for sale.  Even if a product is a traditional Pesach food (such as macaroons) check that it is certified for Passover use.

8- Please express your thanks to store owners, managers, and Mashgichim.  They have been working hard (and under much tension) to supply the community with Pesach food since Chanuka!


Keystone-K – Updated Romaine Lettuce Health Alert & Raw Vegetables

November 27, 2018


Kislev 19, 5779

November 27, 2018


The CDC has updated its alert regarding Romaine lettuce.  You may find further information at the following link:


While I cannot accept legal responsibility for the following information, I am sharing it for those people who may find it helpful.


Pos’Tiv and Kosher Gardens Romaine lettuce are grown on dedicated fields and in a controlled environment.  The current outbreak should not affect them.


Bodek has been laboratory tested and was found not to be contaminated.


Dark green leafy vegetables have many health benefits.  Simply “staying away from vegetables” may be an unhealthy choice.  As many healthy vegetables are “at risk” for contamination, I recommend that the same procedures recommended for insect removal be used for safety as well.   I feel that it is wise to use the following procedures even for raw produce that does not require checking according to halocha.  I suggest following these procedures even when there are no active health alerts.  For halocha reasons we recommend soaking broccoli and cauliflower in a warm solution of FIT or liquid detergent for twenty minutes prior to rinsing vigorously and very thoroughly.  The last rinse water must be checked with a thrip cloth.


Use FIT (available at Amazon or FITWASH.COM) or Regal vegi-wash (available at  Use at least 3X the recommended amount and vigorously swish the produce in the solution for at least 1 minute.  (Some people use 2 Tablespoons of liquid dish-washer soap (such as DAWN) per gallon of water because it is much less expensive than FIT and REGAL.  I prefer FIT or Regal for health reasons.)  Rinse very well.  Check the last rinse water for infestation with a thrip cloth.   I have large thrip cloths available for sale at $10 each.  I also have a limited amount of vegi-wash available for sale.


(Contaminated produce should not be used even when carefully cleaned.)

V-Coffee on Shabbos

November 14, 2018

V-Coffee on Shabbos

A new way of manufacturing instant coffee is becoming popular.  Coffee produced in this manner is touted as tasting better and being healthier.  The process for producing “V-Coffee” does not involve any pre-cooking  of all the coffee powder, but rather, air-roasting and grinding a portion of the powder.   It is roasted by a process similar to making air popped popcorn.  Due to the fact that a portion of this coffee is not pre-cooked, using it on Shabbos poses a halachic question, as there is a question if re-cooking an item that was baked or roasted is permissible in a “kli-sheni” (second vessel).  As always, everyone should follow the guidance of their own rabbi.  My recommendation is to use “irui kli-sheni”  (pouring from a second vessel).   This is the procedure: pour from the kettle into a cup, put the V-coffee into a dry cup, then pour the hot water into the second cup.

Sukkas Available / And a List of All Keystone-K Establishments

September 21, 2018

The following is the list of all the establishments under Keystone-K / Community Kashrus of Greater Philadelphia supervision.  If you hear of any establishments that are not on this list claiming to be under our supervision, please notify us.


We note establishments that report having a sukka.  As many establishments put up Sukkas shortly before Yom Tov we are unable to certify them.  We will IY”H update information on our website as it becomes available.



All Star – Homestyle Catering

8201 Castor Ave.

Philadelphia, PA 19152



Barbara and Harvey Brodsky Enrichment Center of Jewish Family and Children Services

349 Montgomery Ave

Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004



Barrack Hebrew Academy Kitchen

272 S. Bryn Mawr Ave.

Bryn Mawr, PA 19010





Best Cake Kosher Bakery

7594 Haverford Ave. Philadelphia, PA 19151




CBS Gourmet Catering

198 Tomlinson Road

Philadelphia, PA 19116

215- 671-1981



Center City Soft Pretzel Co.

816 Washington Ave.

Philadelphia, PA



Chilly Philly Ice Cream

7035 Greene St.

Philadelphia, PA 19119




Chuckie’s Kosher Adventure Tours

107 Llanfair Rd.

Bala Cynwyd. PA 19004









DFH Management Company (Ann Hirsch)

40 Old Lancaster Road

Merion, PA 19066




Drexel University Kosher Café at the Perelman Center

118 34th St.

Philadelphia, PA




Espresso Cafe & Sushi Bar

7814 Castor Avenue

Philadelphia, PA 19152






GIANT Huntingdon Valley

737 Huntingdon Pike

Huntingdon Valley, PA 19006

(215) 379-6900




GIANT Wynnewood

50 E. Wynnewood Road

Wynnewood, PA 19096

(610) 642-5206



H & E Cohen Catering (at Approved Facilities)

Philadelphia, PA




Hava NaGrilla – BBQ Event Supervision

1001 Remington Rd.

Wynnewood, PA 19096




Homemade Goodies by Roz

510 South 5th Street (between Lombard and South)

Philadelphia, PA




House of Kosher

9806 Bustleton Ave.,

Philadelphia, PA 19115

(215) 677-8100



Jake’s Kosher Smoked Meats

7588 Haverford Ave.

Philadelphia, PA 19151



JCFS Catering Kitchen (AISH)

349 Montgomery Ave.

Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004





Kosher Catering Philadelphia, LLC – Chef Daniel Israel

7588 Haverford Ave.

Philadelphia, PA 19151




Kosher Crops

200 Haverford Road

Wynnewood, PA 19096




Kosher Dining at the University of Pennsylvania

Steinhardt Hall

39th Street between Walnut and Locust Streets





Kosher Foods and More

2840 Pine Road, Unit C.

Huntingdon Valley, PA 19006





Kosher in Philly Catering – At Congregation Mikveh Israel

44 North 4th St.,

Philadelphia, PA 19106





Mama’s Vegetarian

18 S. 20th Street

Philadelphia, PA




Moore Bakery / I Want Moore

220 Krams Ave.

Philadelphia, PA 19127





Nana’s Kitchen & Catering at the JCC

45 Haverford Road

Wynnewood, PA 19096






New York Bagel

Please verify that you are at the Kosher bagel shop.

There are stores with similar names in the city that are not Kosher.

The Kosher store is at the corner of City and Haverford Avenues.

A Kosher certificate is on display.

7555 Haverford Ave.

Philadelphia, PA 19151



Palace Royale

9859 Bustleton Ave.

Philadelphia, PA 19115





Pepsi Bottling Group

Roosevelt Blvd. & Comley

Philadelphia, PA 19102





Performance Food Centers

59 Airport Road

Pottstown, PA 19464






Philly’s Kosher Deli – at Penn Chabad

4032-34 Spruce St.

Philadelphia, PA 19104





R&R Produce and Fish

7551 Haverford Avenue

Philadelphia, PA 19151





Rita’s Water Ice – Grant Ave.

1709 Grant Ave.

Philadelphia, PA 19111




Rita’s Water Ice – Roosevelt Mall

2327 Cottman Ave.

Philadelphia, PA 19111





Rita’s Water Ice – Yorktown Plaza Elkins Park

110 Yorktown Plaza

Elkins Park, PA



Rollings, The Bakery

8 Montgomery Ave.

Elkins Park, PA 19027






Shalom Pizzeria

7598 Haverford Ave.

Philadelphia, PA 19151





Shevy’s Babka Paradise


2000 Spring Garden St. 1F

Philadelphia, PA


4032-34 Spruce St.

Philadelphia, PA 19104




ShopRite – Kosher on the Boulevard

11000 Roosevelt Blvd.

Philadelphia, PA 19116




Star of David

942 Montgomery Avenue

Penn Valley, PA 19027





TEMPLE UNIVERSITY: Zaydee’s Café at Temple U

1441 Norris Street

Philadelphia, PA 19121





The Kosher Grill – Wells Fargo Center

The Kosher Grill

Wells Fargo Center

3601 S. Broad St,

Philadelphia, PA 19148

(773) 897-9904




The Sweet Trading Co

733B Montgomery Ave

Narberth, PA 19072




Wricley Nut Products

480 Pattison Ave.

Philadelphia, PA 19148




306 Levering Mill Road

Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004





Zev Seidman’s Catering

7306 Brookhaven Rd.

Philadelphia, PA 19151

215-477-0864 or 610-649-5611







Orla ערלה – The first Three Years

January 1, 2018

The fruit of a tree or fruit bush may not be eaten during the first three years of its growth.  Not only is it prohibited to eat the fruit but no benefit whatsoever may be derived from the fruit.  This halocha applies both in Eretz Yisroel and in חו”ל (outside of Eretz Yisroel).  There is one major difference between Eretz Yisroel and  חו”ל (outside of Eretz Yisroel) – in Eretz Yisroel we must determine that the fruit is not “Orla” before eating it, while in  חו”ל (outside of Eretz Yisroel) we may go after the majority of fruit which grew after the first three years.  If you pick your own fruit you must ascertain that the tree has been growing for at least three years even outside of Eretz Yisroel.

If a tree is replanted without a ball of earth around the roots (bare roots) the three years must be counted over again.  This is how most commercial orchards plant trees.  A nursery plants the saplings and when they reach the desired size they are chilled so that they go into dormancy.  The young tree is shipped bare rooted as it is much less expensive to ship it without a ball of earth around the roots.  This means that in most cases the three years need to be counted from the replanting, not the original planting.

The produce of the fourth year is called “revai”.  It is sanctified and must be eaten in Yerushalyim.  It is possible to transfer the sanctity onto coins, as is done with מעשר שני (The Second Tithe).  May Moshiach come soon and may we fulfill all of the מצוות (precepts) attached to the Land of Israel, thereby meriting the Land’s Blessings in full.


Keystone-K Timely Kashrus Information

November 21, 2017

Now that cooler weather is upon us there are a number of Kashrus issues to be mindful of:


The cool weather tends to lower the amount of insect infestation of local produce, however, much of the available produce is imported.  Mexico and other warm climates tend to have an above average incidence of infestation.  For health reasons as well it is advisable to wash all imported produce with extra care – using ample amounts of either liquid soap or anti-bacterial vegi-wash.


We recommend not purchasing fruit from Eretz Yisroel unless it has a reliable hechsher.  Much of the fruit exported from Eretz Yisroel is orla (from the first three years).  The laws of “orla” from Eretz Yisroel have special impact due to the Kedusha of Eretz Yisroel.  [We have detailed Halocha explanations about this in our halocha section.]


Please check the origin of the produce you purchase.  According to USA law the origin of the produce must be on the label or posted.  We have detailed instructions regarding the removal of Terumos and Maasros from vegetables that come from Eretz Yisroel on our web-site.  We strongly encourage purchasing vegetables from Eretz Yisroel.  It is longstanding Jewish practice to express our affinity for Eretz Yisroel by purchasing and using produce and objects from Israel.


In order to share the most up-to-date Kashrus information, the major Kashrus agencies (AKO) meet yearly at the offices of the OU.  The following information may be of particular interest:


Vinegar and salt-water cleaning are no longer accepted as effective for infested fruits and vegetables.


Special attention must be given to the cleaning of organic produce.


Riced cauliflower (from a reputable company) has been commercially cleaned very well, and does not need to be cleaned or checked.


False claims of Kashrus are rampant on the Internet.  Amazon is very responsive when an unauthorized Kashrus symbol is used on their web-site, many other companies are not compliant even when alerted to the illegal use of registered trademarks.  It is advisable to check the product itself for the Kosher symbol.  Symbols printed on the product itself are usually accurate.


Much of the Kosher news on blogs is either erroneous or posted maliciously by someone with an “agenda”.  Your family’s Rav and the recognized Kashrus agencies are the best sources for accurate information.


Please check for symbols when buying items in the Kosher Section of a store.  Shelf-stockers and customers do place items in the wrong place.  If something doesn’t seem quite right, please check carefully, and feel free to ask.


The Keystone-K depends on memberships.  The cost of membership is kept low so that everyone can join the community in supporting this vital Communal organization.  Even if you are already a member, please encourage your friends and neighbors to join as well.   The web address to sign up on-line for membership is  We will be happy to sign-you up manually if you send a check (Community Kashrus) to the address below with your e-mail.


Community Kashrus of Greater Philadelphia

2014 Upland Way

Philadelphia, PA 19131



Technology and Scientific Developments Impact on Halocha / Lettuce, Chicken, Ovens, Refrigeration, Lab Grown Meat

Technology and Scientific Developments Impact on Halocha / Lettuce, Chicken, Ovens, Refrigeration, Lab Grown Meat Rav Yaakov Yisroel Kanievsky zt”l (The Steipler) in his Sefer, Chayai Olam, quotes the Zohar that the wellsprings of scientific knowledge will gush forth during the latter part of the sixth millennia.   We all see that this scientific progress may … Continued

Tevillas Keilim

What needs Tevilla? Utensils which are used for eating or for preparing food require tevilla.  Those utensils that are used in early stages of preparation of food do not require tevilla, for example equipment used to harvest food and equipment used to sift flour.   Only utensils owned by someone who is Jewish that were … Continued


Have any questions about one of our establishments or general kashrus issues?
Contact our kashrus administrator