December 20, 2010

“Kvelling” About the New Product Winners

Kvelling is a Yiddish word that can best be translated as beaming with pride. It’s the kind of feelings that parents get while watching a child graduate or when observing their offspring walk down the aisle. That’s the way Abe Sharp, an official of the Chicago Rabbinical Council, must feel at the success of the New Product Competition that has become a main event at Kosherfest and indeed of the entire industry. Mr. Sharp was after all the head of the Kosher Food Distributors Association of America that first introduced the concept of a New Product Competition in the late ’80’s and ‘90’s. KFDA at the time also recognized the best retail ads. Today, Abe indeed beams at the prominence of the competition and can only admire just how far kosher has come. Recognizing excellence in products that can very well compete not only in kosher but in the general marketplace speaks mountains for the development of kosher.

To be honest, I will also be amongst the “kvellers” as I hand out the awards next Tuesday at Kosherfest. Why? Because a decade ago the awards went to products that were basically just breaking out from the traditional kosher mold. Today, there is a competitive spirit amongst manufacturers to produce some of the products that are quality items and happen to be kosher. The real winner is the kosher consumer looking to experience the tastes and flavors that he could only dream about just a decade ago. So Abe, this year’s New Product Competition is for you. Go ahead and “kvell.”