Israel Navy Sponsors Kashrut Competition

Next week, the Israel Navy will launch a competition between elite naval commando unit Shayetet 13′s missile ship crews to see who has the fewest violations of the laws of kashrut. The prize? A “fun day” in the IDF Rabbinate – including a tour of a heritage site, a talk with a rabbi, a full-length performance by the house troupe, and a barbecue – all 100% kosher, of course.

In recent years, as the number of observant soldiers in the Israel Navy’s various units increased, the IDF Rabbinate identified the missile ships’ Achilles’ heel – because of the unique on-board conditions, the sailors cook for themselves in the galley, without familiarity of the laws of kashrut, which leads to many violations.

Since the ships are at sea, there is no way of sending out representatives of the rabbinate to purify dishes or instruments that have been made non-kosher. The solution is to give the soldiers an incentive to maintain the galleys’ kashrut, especially those who don’t keep kosher.


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