New Options For The Kosher Consumer:
Rabbi approved marijuana products – At this time the Orthodox Union certifies both vaporized medical cannabis and medical cannabis oil as kosher. The kashrus agency has been considering giving its stamp of approval to medical marijuana edibles.
Marijuana is technically considered to be kitniyos, a Hebrew word meaning legumes. During the Passover holiday, the word kitniyot takes on a broader meaning to include the category of foods that may not be eaten during Passover by Jews following traditional Ashkenazi laws and customs. Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky ruled last winter that it is acceptable for Passover use for Jews of all backgrounds when used for medicinal purposes.
Rabbis Take On Medical Marijuana
Marijuana is making its way into the hands of Rabbis. Rabbi Yitzchok Zilberstein and Rabbi Kanievsky, Jewish legal scholars who decide the Halakha in cases of law where previous authorities are inconclusive or in those situations where no halakhic precedent exists, discussed marijuana’s healing scent, with Rabbi Zilberstein making a Borei Minei Besamim (“The Creator of different types of fragrances.” This is the “catch-all” recited blessing for all fragrances, the equivalent of reciting a blessing on food.) and smelling a bundle of marijuana leaves before offering them to Rabbi Kanievsky to smell as well.
In California, those looking for kosher marijuana edibles have several options. Janice Hardoon, owner of the Koreatown Collective in Los Angeles, makes her own kosher marijuana products.
“We have very strict supervision,” Hardoon told VIN News. “People are very comfortable coming here. I have been doing this for 10 years and have a solid knowledge of medical marijuana.”
Kaiya Bercow is the co-founder of Utopia Farms, which sells “kosher-friendly” marijuana macaroons in California. The macaroons, made with marijuana-infused coconut oil are vegan and “a nutritional way to medicate” Gan-Jah, marijuana farm is a Shomer Shabbos farm, from the people who grow the plants to those who pack the finished edible products, at Gan-Jah, is an Orthodox Jew.
“I do think there is a place in Jewish practice for cannabis,” said Yerachmiel Johnson, founder of Gan-Jah. “Everything has its sacred purpose at the right time.”