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Passover is around the corner, and handmade shmurah matzah is starting to pop up on supermarket shelves. Before long, it’ll be everywhere—from Costco to the White House. Demand for the traditional, round matzah has grown at a rapid rate in the last 60 years, and in 2017, according to a survey conducted by Chabad.org, more than 1 million pounds of the handmade variety will be produced in the United States alone. To meet the growing demand, matzah bakeries around the world begin baking shmurah matzah as early as October, producing batches of the charred, smoking discs.It wasn’t always like that.

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