New York, NY… The number of new kosher certifications – “hechsherim”- on products, establishments, and retailers will top 2500 as 2018 closes, Kosher Today has learned. Almost a quarter of the new certifications will be by the Orthodox Union (OU) with other leading kosher certifications like the OK, Kof-K, cRc and Star-K also securing hundreds of new kosher certifications. Many of the new hechsherim will be overseas in places like China where manufacturers are pressed to go kosher so that their ingredients can be allowed into key markets like Israel and the USA. Sources tell Kosher Today that kosher remains a desired claim on products. According to the Mintel research agency from years past, the kosher symbol was the most widely added claim on new food products. While the number of kosher certifications is extremely impressive, it is by no-means record setting since there have been many banner years for kosher certifications since 2010. When asked to predict trends in 2019, most agreed that they expect the pace of new certifications to continue. This also explains why so many companies exhibiting at large food shows like the Fancy Food Show now feature large signs indicating that they were kosher.