Teaneck NJ… If Rabbi Moshe Lebovits of the Kof-K Kosher Supervision has his way, it won’t be long before as many as 90 of some 190 BJ’s club stores will have kosher bakeries. Rabbi Lebovits began negotiations a year and a half ago with the result being that 11 stores, mostly in New York already have kosher bakeries and as many as 6 more are in the process of having their bakeries go kosher. In koshering the bakeries, the Kof-K rabbis also had to assure separate pans and screens for pareve and dairy. “In the case of their signature decorative cakes we had to change the red ink which contained carmine,” said Rabbi Lebovits. The New York stores that already have kosher bakeries are in Freeport, Garden City, Farmingham, Yorktown Heights, Valley Stream, Farmingdale, East Setauket, Brooklyn, Westbury and Monroe. Soon to come are stores in Middle Village, College Point, Bronx, Stoughton MA, and Waltham MA. Plans are also underway to kosher additional stores in Massachusetts, as well as in Maryland, Florida and Rhode Island. “The hope is that this program will extend to smaller kosher markets so that the BJ’s stores can become a source for kosher baked goods in those areas,” said Rabbi Lebovits.
BJ’s is the latest of the nation’s club stores to pursue a kosher program. Its major competitors Costco and Wal-Mart’s version of a warehouse club concept, Sam's Club, already have extensive kosher offerings in their stores.