The head of the London Board of Shechita has said “people will adapt” to new rules requiring livers to be koshered before sale.
Mark Goldwater made the comments in a letter to a Jewish consumer who had raised the problems associated with pre-koshered liver.
Until the start of the year, meat including beef, lamb and poultry needed to be sold pre-koshered but liver did not, as consumers say this “ruins the flavour”.
Goldwater, who is chief executive of the London Board for Shechita, said the policy change came from the London Board’s Rabbinical Authority, consisting of the UK’s three most senior Dayanim.
“The decision to implement the policy was taken by them after weighing most carefully all the potential issues including their knowledge that the majority of customers who frequent our licensed butchers may not be otherwise fully observant Jews,” he said.
“They are the Rabbinical heads of ‘mainstream’ Jewry in the UK and are fully familiar with the challenges facing the community and essentially what makes them tick.”
Chefs and caterers had already adapted to the change, he said, because “for many years” liver supplied to them has been pro-koshered.
“We are confident therefore that in time, consumers will adapt and achieve the finished article they require.”
Koshering is a process involving washing, draining, salting and drying, which is much quicker for liver than for meat and fowl. Until this year, consumers have been koshering the liver themselves at home, but now kosher butchers are having to explain to customers about the change.
“I am confused as to why this has been deemed necessary,” said Toni Honickberg, a Jewish consumer who lives near Edgware.
“Most of the cooks and chefs I have come across like to kosher liver themselves, for convenience and freshness. Selling it already koshered ruins the whole flavour, texture and cooking process as it dries out too quickly. Who on earth decided that selling pre-koshered liver was best for the customer?”