April 21, 2020

Kosher World Loses Many Notables due to COVID-19

New York…COVID-19 has claimed a number of notable personalities in the world of kosher in addition to Rabbi Don Joel Levy, who headed the OK Kosher Certification. Prior to the Passover holiday, COVID-19 claimed the lives of Zvi (Henri) Schmidt who headed the Paskesz food company and Bezalel (Charles) Bertram, 70, of S. Bertram Inc., the major purveyor for the kosher foodservice industry. S. Bertram also launched a number of successful brands to the retail market, including its successful B’Gan brand.

In Manchester, Rabbi Osher Yaakov Westheim passed away at the age of 71. He was a leading authority on kashrus and respected worldwide for his breadth of knowledge on kashrus issues. In Chicago, news came of the passing of Rabbi Shalom Gurewicz, a Rabbinic Coordinator for the Kof-K Kosher Supervision Agency, at the age of 56. Kosher food industry professionals say that these high level losses in kosher will leave an enormous void.