Halacha for Wednesday 22 Adar 5780 March 18 2020

Food Products for Pesach Use Nowadays

Beginning from thirty days before Pesach, the Mitzvah of eliminating Chametz takes effect. This includes all of the Pesach cleaning and all measures taken to ensure one does not transgress the prohibition of consuming or owning Chametz on Pesach.

It is therefore incumbent on each of us to begin to take heed that any food products one plans on using on Pesach not come in contact with Chametz. Similarly, shop-keepers and store-owners must make sure to place kosher for Pesach food items in clean places so that they do not come into contact with Chametz, such as flour and the like.

The basis for this law is from the Gemara (Pesachim 6a) which states that if one sets sail thirty days before Pesach, one is obligated to eliminate all Chametz in one’s possession before departing. The Rishonim derive from here that the Mitzvah of eliminating Chametz begins thirty days before Pesach and continues until the time Chametz is burned on Erev Pesach. (If, G-d-forbid, one finds Chametz later than this time, one must likewise eliminate it immediately.)

In previous generations, food products were generally made from basic, raw ingredients, such as fruits, vegetables, legumes, and the like. In the past several generations, however, where the food service market has been largely commercialized and subjected to many technological advancements, it has become necessary to appoint Kashrut supervisors for Pesach and year-round. Thus, nowadays, food products acceptable for Pesach use must be marked with a “Kosher for Passover” denomination.

All loose food products that could conceivably contain Chametz, such as dried fruits, nuts, seeds, cheeses, and the like may not be purchased for Pesach unless the shop-keeper is a G-d-fearing individual who knows all of the ingredients these Pesach-sensitive items contain (it is sometimes difficult to ascertain all of the ingredients in some products, like cheeses), in which case one may rely on his word that these foods are kosher for Pesach. However, one may not rely on the word of shop-keeper who is not G-d-fearing regarding the Kashrut of food products.

Thus, if a shop-keeper is non-religious or non-Jewish (applicable to many supermarket chains in Israel and abroad), one may not purchase food products for Pesach from such an establishment, unless it is a sealed product with a reliable “Kosher for Passover” symbol.

Maran Ha’Chida writes in his Sefer Avodat Ha’Kodesh (Section 196) in the name of our Sages that anyone who is careful not to transgress the prohibition of consuming or owning Chametz on Pesach even in the slightest is guaranteed to have a good year, for the Pesach holiday is the source of the rest of the year.

Ask the Rabbi


הלכה יומית מפי הראש"ל הגאון רבי יצחק יוסף שליט"א

דין ברכת שפטרנו מעונשו של זה
לחץ כאן לצפייה בשיעורים נוספים

Recent Halachot

"תנא דבי אליהו כל השונה הלכות בכל יום מובטח לו שהוא בן העולם הבא"

נדה ע"ג א'

8 Halachot Most Popular

Question: May one eat bread without washing one’s hands if one does not touch the bread with one’s hands directly and instead holds it with a napkin and like?

Answer: The Gemara in Masechet Chullin (107b) states: “The Sages permitted a cloth (i.e. they permitted eating bread without first washing one’s hands by wrapping one’s hands in a cloth) for those eating Terumah (meaning that during the time when the Bet Hamikdash still stood, befo......

Read Halacha

Salt on the Table

Question: Is there a halachic necessity to have salt placed on the table before reciting the Hamotzi blessing and is it necessary to observe this custom on weekdays as well? Answer: The Gemara (Berachot 40a) states: “Rava bar Shmuel said in the name of Rav Chiya: One may not recite the Hamo......

Read Halacha

Eating without First Washing One’s Hands

In the previous Halacha, we have explained that one may not be lenient and nullify the edict of washing one’s hands prior to eating bread; even if one does not touch the bread with one’s hands directly and merely holds it with gloves or a napkin, one may still not defy this edict. If one......

Read Halacha

The Laws of Washing One’s Hands for a Bread Meal

The Enactment of Washing One’s Hands for a Bread Meal There is a rabbinic enactment to wash one’s hands before sitting down to eat a bread meal. The Mishnah in Masechet Eduyot (Chapter 5) relates that Rabbi Eliezer ben Chanoch was excommunicated for having raised doubts about the necess......

Read Halacha


The “Asher Yatzar” Blessing vs. Birkat Hamazon

Question: In the previous Halacha, we have discussed if one becomes obligated to recite an after-blessing on food and before he does so, he uses the facilities and becomes obligated to recite the “Asher Yatzar” blessing, one should recite the “Asher Yatzar” blessing first and......

Read Halacha

Question: If one becomes obligated to recite an after-blessing after eating any food (for instance, by eating a Kezayit, approximately twenty-seven grams, of fruit) and before reciting the after-blessing, one used the facilities and becomes obligated to recite the “Asher Yatzar” blessing, which blessing must one recite first: Should one first recite the “Asher Yatzar” blessing or the after-blessing on the food one ate?

Answer: This question has already been discussed by the Maharshal (Rabbeinu Shlomo Luria, one of the foremost Acharonim who lived approximately five-hundred years ago in Eastern Poland and authored the Sefer Yam Shel Shlomo and others) in his responsa (Chapter 97) and writes that if one becomes obli......

Read Halacha

A Power Outage on Shabbat

Question: Last Shabbat, there was a power outage and for six hours, we had no electricity. Later on in the day when the problem was repaired, the Plata (electric hotplate) turned back on. Is it permissible to eat the foods that were warmed on the hotplate? Answer: Regarding the aforementioned mat......

Read Halacha

Reciting Birkat Hamazon in the Place One Has Eaten

Question: Is one obligated to recite Birkat Hamazon specifically where one has eaten bread or may one recite this blessing elsewhere? Answer: One who eats a bread meal must recite Birkat Hamazon in the place where one has eaten and one may not go to a different place and recite the blessing there......

Read Halacha