April 11, 2016

Is it Time for More National Companies to go KP?

New York…When walking the Kosher for Passover aisles, it seems that they are dominated by the well-known kosher brands like Gefen, Haddar, Manischewitz, Bloom’s, Paskesz, Osem and more. But there are also many national companies that make the investment in doing special Passover runs. Perhaps they recognize that Passover is the most widely observed holiday on the Jewish calendar or that kosher food sales are 40% of year-round sales. One company that has in the past produced Passover products, skipped a few years and is now returning is Dannon which will again be producing OU-P yogurt in coffee and vanilla flavors and will also be available in the smaller 6 oz. size. Coca Cola will again be available with an OU-P for Pesach in Regular and Diet flavors. Aside from the New York metropolitan area, Coke will be available in Boston, Baltimore-Washington, Miami, Atlanta and Los Angeles. Coca Cola items will be made with an OU-P in 2 liter bottles. All the Passover Coke items will be marked with a distinctive yellow cap in addition to the P symbol on the cap or shoulder of the bottle. Certified by the OK Kosher Certification, Tropicana has been producing a host of products for 23 years. In 2009, the company disclosed that kosher for Passover production at the Bradenton facility alone accounted for approximately 8.6 million cartons, 1.1 million cases, and 4.4 million gallons of orange juice. Adding in its other facilities and accounting for the fact that kosher has grown by some 20% since then, the production is no doubt significantly higher. Many dairy companies like Friendship also produce kosher for Passover products.

An industry official told Kosher Today that while some of the large food companies do special runs for Passover, many do not either because they find it less than economical to do so or because they are convinced that they could not compete with Jewish ethnic brands. Kosher sources say that many mainstream kosher shoppers also buy the ethnic products on Passover. Norman’s the leading producer of chalav yisrael Greek Yogurt says it managed to retain a year-round taste despite the change in some ingredients.