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Kosher, Meet Organic

With organic growth maturing, it's timely indeed that two of the biggest names in their respective areas of expertise have forged an alliance to give each other a boost. We're talking about STAR-K, the kosher certification organization in Baltimore, Md., and Quality Assurance International, a leading organic certifier based in San Diego, Calif.

Consumers can currently find a variety of kosher organic products on store shelves, but their numbers are dwarfed by the amount of non-kosher organics, or non-organic kosher items. Products that meet both the strict requirements of Jewish dietary laws and the USDA National Organic Program specifications allows consumers of both categories to find products that meet all their demands.

If you think about it, kosher and organic aren't that different. Both categories are extremely popular, and have a large constituency of core consumers: Kosher is driven by religious belief, while organic appeals to those who hold very dear views on lifestyle and the environment. Then, there are untold numbers of casual consumers who just like the added measure of assurance that go into creating these certified products.

In 2008, both “kosher” and “organic” were among the Top 10 claims for new products, according to Mintel's Global New Products Database. As officials from both firms pointed out, these two intersecting trends can give rise to a new specialty food category — kosher organic. And why not? With everyone looking for more documentation, curious about the source of their food and wanting to know how it was made, this type of cross-category double-certification is an inevitable necessity.