Knives are out over kosher prices

The Jewish Chronicle - - FRONT PAGE - BY MAR­CUS DYSCH

KOSHER MEAT pro­duc­ers have re­acted fu­ri­ously to a study which claimed their prices had soared in the past decade.

Butch­ers said the fig­ures had been “ma­nip­u­lated” to ig­nore mar­ket forces and in­creased pro­duc­tion costs.

The re­port by econ­o­mists An­thony Tri­cot and An­drea Sil­ber­man — pub­lished in last week’s JC — cal­cu­lated that kosher meat prices had dou­bled, while non-kosher prices had risen by 40 per cent.

Jacky Lipow­icz, Li­censed Kosher Meat Traders’ As­so­ci­a­tion chair­man, said mem­bers had reg­u­larly slashed prices be­cause they knew Jewish cus­tomers were strug­gling to af­ford sta­ples such as chicken.

He said ris­ing global feed prices meant the small kosher in­dus­try would con­tinue to face chal­lenges.

The qual­ity and safe­guards as­so­ci­at­ed­with­kosher­meatal­sowar­ranted fur­ther con­sid­er­a­tion, Mr Lipow­icz ar­gued. He said: “What did Tesco have in their su­per­mar­kets? Horse. Be­cause no one checked it. That su­per­vi­sion costs money. You get what you pay for.”

Stephen Grossman, owner of the Sil­ver­mans chain of butch­ers and Lewco Pak poul­try pro­duc­tion com­pany, said: “The com­par­i­son was not a true re­flec­tion of a spe­cific di­etary re­quire­ment against a main­stream process.”

Lon­don-based Mr Lipow­icz chal­lenged Mr Tri­cot and Ms Sil­ber­man to re­peat their fig­ures in a pub­lic de­bate. “I will shoot them down in flames,” he said. “They have got a hid­den agenda.”

Lon­don Board for She­chita chief ex­ec­u­tive Mark Gold­wa­ter said the study was “fun­da­men­tally flawed” and claimed it had used prices from “one­off spe­cial of­fers” in main­stream su­per­mar­kets. Mr Tri­cot said the com­par­isons be­tween kosher prices and su­per­mar­kets were “en­tirely rea­son­able” and said spe­cial of­fers had been ex­cluded from

the study.

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