Kosher TransportationThe global kosher food market has been growing in leaps and bounds, and it’s expected to attain a 4.16% CAGR increase by 2028. This growth is a boon to kosher manufacturers.

Understanding kosher transport now is the key to ensuring your kosher transport solutions are up to par with the relevant laws.

What Is Kosher Transportation?

Kosher transportation is the process of transporting food from one location to another while adhering to Jewish dietary laws. The term “kosher” refers to the fact that the food was prepared according to Jewish law. Kosher food products and chemicals must be free of any non-kosher ingredients such as pork, shellfish, blood, and other forbidden substances.

Industrial Kosher Transportation

This type of transport is used for products that will be consumed immediately after being transported. These include dairy products like milk, butter, cheese, ice cream, yogurt, etc. It also includes meat products and chemicals or other constituents such as glycerin.

In addition to the above ingredients, industrial kosher transportation is also used for those ingredients used in food processing, pharmaceuticals, and cosmetics. This includes things such as gelatin, fatty acids, corn syrup, citric acid, 1-hexene, linear alpha olefins, poly alpha olefins, metallocene-catalyzed polymers, isobutylene, polyisobutylene, CaCl2, polyethylene, white oils, specialty lubricants, steel drums, blow-molded plastic drums, coffee and tea.

Why Do We Need Kosher Transportation?

The main reason we need kosher transport is that most people don’t know what to look for when they buy kosher food. They assume that if something says “kosher” on the label, then it’s kosher. But this isn’t always true. There are many different kinds of kosher labels – some are more stringent than others. And even among those that are considered to be strictest, there are still differences between them.

Kosher transportation is important because it helps to ensure that food is safe for consumption. The U.S. Department of Agriculture requires that all foods labeled kosher, be certified kosher, which means they must meet certain requirements regarding ingredients, preparation methods, and storage conditions. This certification ensures that consumers know what they’re buying and that the food is prepared correctly.

How Does Kosher Transportation Work?

Transportation can take place in a variety of ways including air, rail, sea, truck, and road. Each type of transportation has its own set of rules and regulations. For example, the FDA regulates food safety standards for foods shipped by air, whereas the USDA oversees the same for foods shipped by land.

In addition to these federal agencies, each state has its own set of guidelines governing how food should be handled. Some states require that all food be inspected before it leaves the factory, while others only inspect food once it arrives at the store.

How Are Kosher Chemicals Transported?

There are two main ways that Kosher food is transported, whether it’s by air, ship, or rail.

As Packaged Kosher Products

Packaged kosher foods come in disposable boxes, plastic bottles, and other single-use forms of packaging. Regardless of the mode of transport used, packaged kosher products have no kashrus concerns.

As Bulk Unpackaged Kosher Products

Some kosher ingredients are nowadays transported in bulk and unpackaged to factories and storage facilities via tankers. For instance, kosher ketchup manufacturers may transport the liquid sugar and vinegar used in production through liquid tankers.

Depending on the contents, these tankers can either be heated, refrigerated or tuned to the proper transportation conditions. For instance, when the product only needs to be transported a short distance, the ingredients are heated in the plant first before transit. But when the product is in for a long haul, it’s transported via a truck with heating coils embedded in its shell to maintain its temperature.

Unpackaged kosher transport is where kashrus concerns come in. According to kosher rules, all equipment used in kosher food processing must remain kosher. Unfortunately, there are so many ways for kosher and pareve products transported in tankers to lose their integrity. A kosher product may become non-kosher if:

  • It’s transported in a non-kosher tanker
  • A dedicated kosher tanker holds a cold non-kosher product for 24 hours (the non-kosher taste is absorbed by the tanker’s vessel)
  • A heated kosher tanker holds a non-kosher product

How to Maintain the Integrity of Unpackaged Kosher Products in Transit

Although unpackaged kosher products are at a high risk of becoming non-kosher while in transit, it’s possible to maintain their integrity. Here’s how:

A Kosher Upgrade Wash

A kosher upgrade wash is the easiest way to turn a non-kosher tanker into a certified kosher tanker. The wash is typically conducted under the guidance of a Jewish rabbi. Although the process varies from one place to another, it generally goes as follows:

Standard Clean:

All the liquid is removed, and a standard wash is done to remove all the dirt, rust, and debris that might be stuck to the walls. A thorough interior cleaning is performed using specific cleaners (the rabbi guides the tank cleaners). The tank is then left empty for the next 24 hours before any other step.

High Heat Rinse:

For a proper kosher wash, the tanker should:

  1. Be dormant and clean for 24 hours, or undergo a caustic/detergent wash for 20 minutes at greater than 190 degrees
  2. Undergo a freshwater wash for 20 minutes at greater than 200 degrees, using live steam from a high-pressure steam hose. After the rinse, the tanker may be sanitized under the supervision of a rabbi.

Wash facilities that offer kosher tank upgrade washes are required to use only freshwater. This is because there’s a probability that recycled water may have been used to rinse a non-kosher tanker. They’re also required to wash heat exchangers, steam hoses, pumps, and any other equipment used in the process.

Kosher Certified Tankers

Another excellent way to prevent non-kosher tankers from compromising the integrity of kosher food is by dedicating tankers to kosher food transport. That means getting kosher certification for the tanker and using it to transport kosher products specifically. If it had already transported non-kosher products, it would need a high heat washer to become a certified kosher tanker.

Kosher Tanker Certification

Trucks and tankers usually get kosher-certified after an inspection conducted by a rabbi from a reputable kosher agency. In both scheduled and unscheduled inspections, the rabbi reviews the truck’s records, such as kosher wash tickets and truck logs, to confirm the kosher readiness of the tanker. To ensure they uphold kosher transport standards, manufacturers must regularly submit truck log records and all the relevant documentation to their kosher agency.

To schedule a kosher upgrade wash with a Rabbi at an Industrial Kosher certified facility in Texas, call us at 713-398-4513.