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I’m not devoutly religious nor am I an expert in virtuous food for the pious soul. So please allow my ignorance.
But , why don’t BA fill all the meals on the Tel Aviv flight to abide by Kosher laws, and the same for Islamic destinations with Halal meals ?
Many of us probably frequent restaurants that serve up those meals without us even realising !
It’s not the same on the TLV in regards to Kosher meals and I imagine that a large part of this is down to cost but also that Kosher laws regarding food seem to be a little more complicated and dependent on how orthodox a passenger is. It’s been a while since I operated a TLV (they have been Mixed Fleet routes for a while now) but I do recall that for some Kosher customers a vegetarian meal was OK, others would refuse it saying it wasn’t kosher. I’m sure someone more knowledgeable on here can explain better 🙂
RF: as has been said already, the Kosher dietary laws are complex. But there some simple answers that may help to explain them: besides meat having rules about prohibited animals, how the animal is killed, and shell-fish never being Kosher etc, etc, the rest of the rules boil down to the need for supervision in their preparation, by a learned person who has been trained in the laws. This is where the cost aspect comes in, as they have to be paid. And, if the supervisor finds the meat even the slightest bit tainted, on inspection, the whole animal is not used.
A vegetarian meal supplied by BA will not have been supervised during its preparation, so would not intrinsically be deemed acceptable by very orthodox Jewish people. It may also include dairy products, such as eggs or butter, which have their own rules. However, many Jews will take a pragmatic view that the likelihood of a problem (for them) is very remote, so will find vegetarian acceptable. Vegan also needs to be supervised, so won’t be acceptable to some, but with no dairy products, are likely to be acceptable to a greater number.
Kosher meals are always supplied by contractors, who maintain full-time supervisors. As you will have seen, they are double wrapped, and sealed. On-board staff always offer to break the seal and open the package in front of passengers.13 Jul 2019
Halal rules – much less supervision. And shellfish are halal.
I asked friends in Tel Aviv to try and explain the logic of either set of rules, and ….
I don’t think that this forum is the place for a discussion about religious rules – be they Jewish, Muslim, Catholic, Hindu or otherwise. We are trying to discuss the “BA’s CE Pluses & Minuses” and the reasons behind these.
If any member wishes to understand what is behind religious rules, there are plenty of places on the internet to find out more – and then form an opinion. For the reasons behind the rules about Kosher food, this is a fair place to start:
I have no connection with this organisation.13 Jul 2019
@ask1945 – I am just a poster (not a moderator), but I think it is a sad state of affairs if we as a group of posters can not benefit from self education within a forum thread. I know on flyertalk you would get ‘shot at dawn’, if there was any hint of thread drift. My question was purely for education about the halal process… at 57 years of age, I am not too proud to say, I have a thirst for knowledge
IMHO we should embrace education……… but……. I am only a humble poster…..14 Jul 2019
Thank you for your quick response.
David wrote: “I asked friends in Tel Aviv to try and explain the logic of either set of rules, and …. Crazy, eh?”
I am sorry if you feel any way offended by my response to him, but actually I was offended by the words “Crazy, eh?” not your original question. This quote is an opinion about Kashrut, the word for Kosher.
This thread is about BA’s CE Pluses and Minuses, not about the basis of the Kosher rules. I have offered a complete explanation of how BA helpfully attempt to follow the rules of Kashrut. I was being helpful – when steering him back on topic, by offering him a simple guide to Kashrut, published by an official organisation.
He did mention “either set of rules”. I know little about Halal, and so (as such) would not describe their rules as crazy. Indeed, I respect all religions.14 Jul 2019
I am sorry if you were offended by my “crazy”. It is not an opinion about either set of dietary rules: it is an opinion that two sets of rules, that presumably evolved for similar or related reasons, have such a major difference over shellfish. Why?14 Jul 2019
I am sorry if you were offended by my “crazy”. It is not an opinion about either set of dietary rules: it is an opinion that two sets of rules, that presumably evolved for similar or related reasons, have such a major difference over shellfish. Why?
David – thank you for your response.
The Kosher rules relating to sea food cover both shell-fish and certain “bottom” feeding fish. They are based entirely on these animals being unclean in what they feed on. When I hear about so many people being ill after eating dodgy shell-fish, or being allergic, I believe there may be merit in this rule.
I don’t know why Islam doesn’t follow this rule.14 Jul 2019
Many thanks – yes, one of my oldest Jewish friends (who has just resigned the Labour whip in the Lords, good for him) once explained to me that fish had to have scales, and swim in a wriggly way, to be kosher. So when I was with my friends in Tel Aviv, I asked “how can the grey mullet be kosher? It has scales and swims like that, but lives on the seabed and eats unspeakable things”. They did not know, so looked it up and – sure enough, it is not kosher. Logical!
However, some of the rules are not logical and those are the ones that interest me.14 Jul 2019
David – yes, some of the rules are not obviously logical. For many less observant Jews they will be relaxed about which fish they will eat – but not eels, skate, swordfish etc etc. However, the more observant ones will only buy their fish from reliable, supervised sources or keep to dining out on the mainstream ones that are always easy to identify such as plaice, sole, cod, hake, mackerel etc, especially if supervised sources are not available locally.
Again, the following explains more succinctly:
BUT ……….. this is all off-topic. It hasn’t taken those who want to discuss “BA’s CE Pluses and Minuses” any further !!!!!14 Jul 2019
I think the drift from topic was an organic one where someone asked why BA routes to predominantly muslim countries do not simply serve halal food and the TLV Kosher. There were a few reasons/opinions/guesses given all of which were related to airline catering.
Agreed, not specific to Club Europe as the product on TLV or ME routes is Club World. But i’ve definitely educated myself a little so appreciate the drift. 🙂15 Jul 2019
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As the OP for this thread I too have no issue with going off-piste in an educational swerve. Learning should be a lifelong process etc, etc
But I am still baffled why BA don’t offer a drop down meal select function when booking a CE ticket. Seems to be a win for all concerned.
1 user thanked author for this post.15 Jul 2019