Itongadol.- Spending Shabbat without a single cigarette may be bearable for the religious smoker, but a whole week is definitely too much: For the first time in Israel, a "Kosher for Passover" certificate is being granted to tobacco products, following years of halachic doubts on whether they include components seen as chametz.
This comes as good news for smoking kashrut observers, who will now be able to smoke during the holiday as they do on regular weekdays.
Up until now, tobacco companies prevented rabbis from supervising the production of cigarettes and investigating their content. With the lack of supervision, kashrut bodies refused to grant certificates confirming that the product was kosher for Passover.
Rabbinical religious authorities in Israel and abroad discussed the issue for many years but failed to reach a conclusive decision, as tobacco companies refused to reveal the cigarettes\’ flavor and scent components.
Therefore, Jews belonging to the ultra-Orthodox public took a strict approach and avoided smoking for the entire holiday week.
Now, Israeli cigarette manufacturer Dubek has decided to open the gates to its factories to two of the strongest haredi kashrut bodies in Israel, the Sephardic Badatz Beit Yosef (whose president is Rabbi Ovadia Yosef) and the Ashkenazi-Lithuanian affiliated body of Rabbi Yosef Zaritsky.
A permit granted to the company by the two kashrut supervising bodies determined that Israeli-made cigarettes belonging to the Time, Noblesse and Golf brands are kosher for Passover.
Doubts remain in regards to imported brands of Highway and Golf Super Slims.