web analytics
March 29, 2015 / 9 Nisan, 5775
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post


OU Reverses Position and Says Quinoa Can Be Kosher for Passover


Quinoa

Quinoa

The Orthodox Union (OU) has re-studied its ban on “superfood” quinoa fit to eat on Passover and now says it is perfectly all right to consume it on the holiday without fear of violating the Ashkenazi custom that prohibits eating “kitniyot,” which are grains such as rice, corn and peas.

The Kosher Today publication reported this week , ”Following extensive research and on-site investigation of cross-contamination issues by OU Kosher personnel at all quinoa growing areas…as well as the collection, washing and milling stations of quinoa, OU Kosher is recommending quinoa for Passover, when processed with special OU Passover supervision and bearing the OU-P symbol.”

What changed in a year?

The Jewish Press reported here last March, “It seems that in South America, where it is grown, a wind might blow a grain of barley into cultivated rows of quinoa. Barely, like wheat, is prohibited by the Torah for use on Passover. That is enough for the OU to rule that quinoa is not kosher for Passover.”

The Baltimore-based Star-K kosher supervisors ruled differently. “Rav Moshe Feinstein said we weren’t to add on to the rules of kitniyot, so I don’t know why anyone would,” said Rabbi Tzvi Rosen of Star-K, referring to the esteemed posek of Jewish religious law who died in 1986. “And what’s more telling of this ridiculous debate is that quinoa is a seed, not a legume.”

Last year, Rabbi Genack said, “We can’t certify quinoa because it looks like a grain and people might get confused. It’s a disputed food, so we can’t hold an opinion, and we don’t certify it. Those who rely on the OU for a kashrut just won’t have quinoa on Passover.”

Well, quinoa hasn’t changed; it still looks like a grain, but the OU apparently is basing its new policy, which just happens to bring it line with the far from lenient Star K, on OU supervisors walking in the fields in South America to make sure winds do not pick up a nasty kernel of wheat a couple of miles away and plop it down in the middle of quinoa field.

“It is only recently that quinoa has become popular outside of its high-altitude growing area in the Andean mountain region of South America,” Rabbi Genack said. “Known for its nutritional qualities, it has been referred to as a ‘superfood.’”

The United Nations proclaimed 2013 as “The International Year of Quinoa.”

About the Author: Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu is a graduate in journalism and economics from The George Washington University. He has worked as a cub reporter in rural Virginia and as senior copy editor for major Canadian metropolitan dailies. Tzvi wrote for Arutz Sheva for several years before joining the Jewish Press.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

15 Responses to “OU Reverses Position and Says Quinoa Can Be Kosher for Passover”

  1. Guy Peters says:

    OU ? וא השם ??

  2. Guy Peters says:

    OU ? וא השם ??

  3. Gary Chuven says:

    OK. But, as my family does not have a tradition about it, it will not be on my Seder table.

  4. לספרדים או לאשכנזים….חחח

  5. Judith Ross says:

    The entire extremist regarding quinoa, etc., is so foolish, as it the insistence that Ashkanazi Jews must not eat certain foods that Sephardim can eat at Pesach. It is a a mishagus, as all it really says in the Torah, is to eat unleaven for seven days. Guess all the companies who make every luxury food imaginable for Pesach would be unhappy if that is all we decided to do.

  6. Alan Lattke says:

    Hate to disappoint Tzvi but I have been eating Quinoa on Passover for quite a while. Have some great Casher le Pesach recipes too.

  7. Nancy Gaines says:

    Ashkenazi Jews should be allowed to eat like the Sephardim on Passover. As modern Jews, we’re no longer forced by climate to eat what’s available in the garden. If that was the case, most of us in the northern US or Canada would starve. Last Passover, we had snow on the ground in the Northeast.

  8. Doreen White says:

    Well it is about time. The plant is actually an herb that thrives in cold, high elevations. While it’s mostly grown in South America, farmers in the Rocky Mountains and in the Pacific Northwest have recently begun cultivating quinoa as well. The seeds are harvested and that is what we cook and eat.So if it is an herb and not a grain it can not be forbidden. Glad that OU has come to that conclusion too.

  9. For me is the last hope!! I definitely can’t eat gluten!!!!

  10. Jo Torres says:

    My husband has diabetes and the doctor put quinoa as a good carb.

  11. kosher guy says:

    this is really interesting because the star-k found q South America there’s barley and other grains used to protect the crop from Birds theY posted pictures on the website last year star k quinoa is supervised from the planting until the harvest and packaging. OU has not only come in line with them and see if they have become even more lenient and maybe missed out!

  12. Judith Ross, Nancy Gaines; Orthodox Judaism is respectful of minhagim. You may think they were foolish, or outdated, but Orthodox Jews believe these minhagim were instituted or at least supported by great scholars and leaders, and with the endorsement of long use, these minhagim acquired a status equal to Halacha. Certainly, a way around it can be found, just as justification for women reading the Megillah or Bentching or paskening can be found. But those communities that avail themselves of this approach slowly but inexorably and finally drift away from Orthodoxy.

  13. Also, quinoa is a protein food, not a carb!!!

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
18,000 Iranian Centrifuges
Netanyahu Warns Iran-Yemen-Nuclear Deal Axis ‘Dangerous to Humanity’ [video]
Latest News Stories
Hagala

A man makes his cooking pots kosher for Passover by dipping them into boiling water, in a process called Hagala.

Solar panels on the roofs of Israel's Knesset.

Israel’s Government Building Becomes ‘Greenest Parliament’ in the World

18,000 Iranian Centrifuges

The Prime Minister told the Cabinet the deal in the works is even worse than feared.

John Kerry stuck in Lausanne for more talk with Iran.

Don’t expect Iran to sign anything before the last minute, if not afterwards, and if at all.

With “congratulations” like these, who needs a punch in the stomach?

The Iranian-backed rebels also threaten suicide bombing attacks as they approach the Saudi border.

The discovery would be a death blow the PA claims that Tel Aviv is “Palestinian” if it weren’t for the fact that that Arafat was born in Egypt.

Who is Horowitz? He’s Netanyahu’s eyes and ears. He’s very close to him, literally his personal representative everywhere…

“The US negotiating team are mainly there to speak on Iran’s behalf with
other members of the 5+1 countries and convince them of a deal.”

Saudi Arabia withdraws personnel from Aden. Iran calls Saudi strike a “strategic mistake.”

“The tone of #US officials’ background comments on #Iran talks is getting progressively more dreary, like the weather in #Lausanne,” Associate Press reporter Matt Lee tweeted Saturday night. Lee is a veteran journalist who has a keen eye and ear that cuts through the double talk and dishonest smiling faces of American diplomats. If he […]

It is a long tradition in the Muslim world never to agree to anything at an agreed time.

Hamas test fired a rocket on Saturday, the rocket landed within the Gaza Strip.

Israel was aware of the report’s impending release and did not object.

The PA hasn’t changed anything on their end, so why did Netanyahu suddenly change his policy?

More Articles from Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu
18,000 Iranian Centrifuges

The Prime Minister told the Cabinet the deal in the works is even worse than feared.

John Kerry stuck in Lausanne for more talk with Iran.

Don’t expect Iran to sign anything before the last minute, if not afterwards, and if at all.

With “congratulations” like these, who needs a punch in the stomach?

The Iranian-backed rebels also threaten suicide bombing attacks as they approach the Saudi border.

Saudi Arabia withdraws personnel from Aden. Iran calls Saudi strike a “strategic mistake.”

It is a long tradition in the Muslim world never to agree to anything at an agreed time.

Obama’s “two-state” phobia shows how much he and his experts do not understand the Middle East.

The main suspect confessed to passing on information to Syria through the Internet.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/ou-reverses-position-and-says-quinoa-can-be-kosher-for-passover/2014/01/01/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: