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Jan 23, 2012

AMI Sells Magazines With Cholov Yisrael

This post was co-written by myself and Baruch Kelman

AMI magazine ran an article in this past week's edition about how changes in the marketplace have affected the allowance to eat cholov stam milk and milk products.

The cover title on the cover of the edition reads "Why Cholov Yisrael Is Now A Must".

Nothing in the article leaves any, not even close to a, compelling reason why cholov yisrael is a must. It offers logical arguments, and presentation of some new processes, but the author does not make any case of why the allowance for cholov stam can no longer be relied upon. The author does not even try to make that case.

An email sent to the author of the article confirmed that that was not his intention, and it was the magazine editors who chose the title. The title, deceiving as it is, is beneath any decent magazine.

Personally, I do not feel the issue of cholov yisroel is a major issue to be discussed today. People eat cholov stam as a given, and that is not about to change. All major kashrus organizations in the USA authorize cholov stam, and that is not about to change. I have not even heard anybody seriously discuss the issue in many years. People who do not want to rely on it, simply take that upon themselves.

Baruch writes, I think most of the article is old saw and the title was very deceitful. All the major kashrus organization still allow non cholov Yisroel and will continue to do so. I am very disappointed in your magazine -  this will not be the first time that you write things that are questionable. I would expect more from a magazine that wants to attract the torah community. Apparently AMI enjoys all the publicity they are getting, though whenever the heat gets too hot they decide that they are not printing any letters. To their credit they were the only weekly who chose to write about Rav Ahron Soloveichik, though they wrote that he was "an engima" which I dont think is very respectful.

Personally, no matter how many people write articles about how things have changed, people are still going to rely on cholov stam, because they want to. None of the authors, no matter how good their logic is, can stand up to a widely accepted hetter given by Rav Moshe Feinstein (among others). Anybody saying otherwise and expecting the masses to follow is just wasting his time and efforts. And for the magazine to present that as the discussion and then not follow through makes their motives questionable. Good titles sell magazines, but the article behind it should always follow through with what the title promised.

17 comments:

  1. I have no idea what was in the article you are discussing. However, regarding eating chalav stam, see Rav Vitman's article in Tchumin from a few years ago. I believe there is a rumor that Rav Hershel Schachter doesn't drink milk for the same reason.

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  2. he does not drink milk at all? why not drink cholov yisrael? it is very accessible for anyone who wants it

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  3. Rav Herschel Schachter does not drink or eat milk products and has a tshuva about it

    BK

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  4. i have a friend who doesnt consume milk because he believes milk was not meant for human consumption and drinking it is the source of many health problems (such as cancer)

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  5. Cholov Isroel is a big issue in France right now.

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  6. European countries are usually brushed out of the discussion by saying they were not included in Rav Moshe's hetter and should not be relying on it. Personally, I know nothing about the situation in France and have no idea if the hetter, or a different hetter, applies or not. I also have no idea how widespread the usage is.

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  7. Although I thought that the title decitful I enjoy reading the magazine every week.If enough people write that they were upset about the title they we will probably issue a retraction. Like was mentioned in the post it was the only magazine that bothered to write about Rav Ahron Soloveichik on the occassion of his 10th Yarhzeit.

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  8. I couldn't read past this line...

    "The title, deceiving as it is, is beneath any decent magazine."

    You have got to be kidding. Making the headline completely deceiving is the hallmark of a great newspaper!

    It annoys me to know end, but every major newspaper does it.

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  9. My understanding of Rav Schachter's position (which I only heard third hand, so read the teshuva, rather than relying on me) is that he holds that the majority of cows nowadays are tereifot, and therefore all milk is not kosher.
    I have not read the teshuva, nor have I researched the issue at all - mainly because I'm vegetarian, and if I give up milk products I'll really have nothing to eat!
    Regarding Rav Moshe's teshuva on chalav yisrael: In Britain (because I don't know about the rest of Europe) the same logic should and does apply. However in general Britons of approximately similar halachic levels of observance are more stringent than their American counterparts regarding chalav Yisrael (at least in my experience).

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  10. the issue is that cow stomach are punctured as part of some medical procedure.

    however this isn't a secret that only rav schachter knows.

    so if anyone wants to offer me hagen daz, feel free.

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  11. simple reason - 1 gallon of reg non-cholov yisroel = $1.79 here on sale

    1-gallon cholov yisroel, when the stores have it in stock = 5.49 never on sale.

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  12. I believe that the commentators here have misstated Rav Schachter's position regarding milk products.

    Perhaps I am misrepresenting him as well, but here goes:

    1)He has stopped consuming all dairy products, but does so as a personal chumra and has not instructed or recommended that anyone else adopt his position.

    2)His reason has nothing to do with Chalav Yisroel, nor does it have anything to do with surgeries that relieve bovine stomach bloat.

    3)I believe that his concern is that a significant percentage of cows being milked are treif, not because of surgeries, but because (mostly the older ones) have lessions on their lungs.

    Because all milk does into a common tank, the milk from these treifos is not bateil b'rov. Rather, shishim applies.

    There is no dispute as to the facts here: Everyone agrees that with modern veterinary practice, where animals are pumped with antibiotics and hormones and live longer, stressful lives, that many inevitably develop cancer, while continuing to give milk.

    The counter-argument is that while it might be true that many indivudual cows do, in fact, have lessions on their lungs, it's not something we know about (as regards to any specific cow) as long as it's still alive.

    Rav Shachter does not understand how this teirutz works, given that the industry-wide assumption is that the number is something like 15%.

    Prominent Rabbonim have addressed this matter, including Rav Belsky and Rav Zalman Nechemiah, but not Rav Shachter is unconvinced.

    Hence, he is personally machmir but does not expect anyone else to be.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I believe that the commentators here have misstated Rav Schachter's position regarding milk products.

    Perhaps I am misrepresenting him as well, but here goes:

    1)He has stopped consuming all dairy products, but does so as a personal chumra and has not instructed or recommended that anyone else adopt his position.

    2)His reason has nothing to do with Chalav Yisroel, nor does it have anything to do with surgeries that relieve bovine stomach bloat.

    3)I believe that his concern is that a significant percentage of cows being milked are treif, not because of surgeries, but because (mostly the older ones) have lessions on their lungs.

    Because all milk does into a common tank, the milk from these treifos is not bateil b'rov. Rather, shishim applies.

    There is no dispute as to the facts here: Everyone agrees that with modern veterinary practice, where animals are pumped with antibiotics and hormones and live longer, stressful lives, that many inevitably develop cancer, while continuing to give milk.

    The counter-argument is that while it might be true that many individual cows do, in fact, have lesions on their lungs, it's not something we know about (as regards to any specific cow) as long as it's still alive.

    Rav Shachter does not understand how this teirutz works, given that the industry-wide assumption is that the number is something like 15%.

    Prominent Rabbonim have addressed this matter, including Rav Belsky and Rav Zalman Nechemiah, but Rav Shachter is unconvinced.

    Hence, he is personally machmir but does not expect anyone else to be.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Kashrus ExperienceJanuary 24, 2012 4:30 PM

    Rafi,
    I know that an important Eurpoean Beis Din has been looking into the issue of Cholov stam in their countries BECAUSE NEW EUROPEAN UNION LAWS HAVE CHANGED THE FACTS ON THE GROUND THERE and it is likely that Rav Moshe Feinstein's heter may apply.
    Note this isn't for sure yet, unless I missed the announcement that that Beis Din had come to a conclusion.

    So the Ami seems to be on the OPPOSITE side of reality yet again.

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  15. Rafi,
    Perhasp it would help people have a better understanding of the issue if you posted the actual article. On the other hand people can go out and buy the magazine.

    thanks,

    Josh

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  16. I did not read the article, however, it is clear that neither of the OU poskim R. Schachter nor R. Belsky actually drinks cholov stam. For that matter, neither did R. Ahron Soloveichik. Speaking to kashrus experts in the U.S. including from the independent KIC, the biggest worry is not chalav stam but rather the increasing use of staples to relieve bloat. And this is a matter certainly not dealt with in R. Moshe's teshuvas.

    And Baruch, to simple people, R. Ahron and R. Kook will always be enigmas. They can't even figure out if they are machmirim or maikilim.

    ReplyDelete

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