Feb 8, 2017

no dried fruit for Tu bShvat

Tu B'Shvat is coming (this Shabbos, which also happens to be Shabbos Shira), and the stores are busy selling all sorts of dried fruits that people, for whatever reason, love to consume on this holiday. I never really understood what's so great about dried fruits, as the fresh ones taste so much better. Some fruits just aren't accessible fresh, and some might taste better dried, so I get eating those dried - but most fruits are better fresh. I also don't get what dried fruit has to do with Tu B'Shvat. Just because 150 years ago in cold Europe they could only get dried fruit doesn't seem to be a good enough reason, to me, to rpefer it for Tu bShvat today when we have an abundance of fresh fruit available.

Anyways, there are some people who prefer you don't eat the dried fruit, or not much of it, at least. The classic reason some people oppose most of the dried fruit is due to infestation of bugs in many of the various types of dried fruit. Some you can check for and consume, but some are just too infested or too difficult to check and they say you cannot eat these types of dried fruits.

The Ministry of Agriculture is now calling on the public to avoid dried fruits, but for a different reason. The MoA is saying that the dried fruits in the market have less nutrition than fresh fruit and contain artificial food colorings, sugar and empty calories.  

The MoA is saying that instead of eating dried fruits for Tu bShvat, you should be eating fresh fruits.  source: Globes

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  1. You are right. I think that the dried fruit thing started in chul where Jews wanted something from the Holy Land, and considering that this was long before fresh Jaffa oranges became the rage in NY, so all that they could get would be dried figs and raisins.

  2. It doesn't say in shulchan aruch to eat fruit on Tu Bshvat. So why do people eat any fruits on Tu Bshvat? That I can tell you in one word - Tradition! And, as you pointed out, the tradition was to eat dried fruit due to conditions at the time.

    You want do your own thing for Tu Bshvat? Go ahead. But don't wonder why people keep their traditions.


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