What is Shtiebel Eco-Kosher Certification?
Inspired by the idea of Eco-Kashrut formulated by Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, the Shtiebel Eco-Kosher Certification re-imagines traditional kosher laws refracting them through a modern progressive Jewish lens.
The fundamental intention of Eco-Kashrut is to guide people towards greater consciousness of the ethical, social, environmental and spiritual implications of the choices we make about what we put in our bodies.
Shtiebel Eco-Kosher Certification for restaurants and food producers is the only certifying agency that embraces this holistic approach to kashrut, emphasizing compassion, respect for one’s body and that of the earth, and the honoring of those who labor to grow and produce the food we eat.
Shtiebel Eco-Kosher goes beyond kosher, offering certification for restaurants and food producers who embrace a progressive approach to business, and seek a certification that reflects and acknowledges their efforts towards a more equitable, healthy and sustainable food system.
The 5 Core Principles of Shtiebel Eco-Kosher Certification:
1) Bal Tashchit: Avoiding waste and causing no harm to the environment. To this end, menus must be primarily plant-based, and all food ingredients must be sourcedsourced from vendors who have some degree of mindfulness of the way in which the food is grown and its environmental implications.
2) Tza'ar Baalei Chayim: Being mindful of the pain of animals. To wit, all animal products must be certified kosher with a traditional heksher that keeps in mind the pain of the animal.
3) V'Nishmartem L'Nafshoteichem: Maintaining a healthy body. For this reason, Shtiebel Kosher Certification discourages the use of overly processed foods, and encourages local organic produce based on market availability. Ultimately SKC encourages operators to offer health-supportive menu items.
4) Lo Ta'ashok Sachir Oni: Treating employees fairly. All certified institutions must treat their workers fairly, and offer a livable wage and room to grow in the company. Food products and supplies should be obtained from sources that do not oppress their workers.
5) Shomer Masoret: Being mindful and respectful of Jewish ancestral traditions regarding kashrut as long as these doesn't conflict with the other principles listed here. For this reason, all ingredients used in food production should be certified kosher with a traditional heksher, or otherwise approved by SKC.