Food for thought: Museum serves up kosher delights at Food Safety Congress
It was foodie heaven at the 5th Food Safety Congress this week where delegates were treated to Poland’s first ever kosher food fair.
Held at the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw on November 6th, seven Polish companies presented their kosher products following an initiative by Klaudia Klimek, the founder of Jewrnalism - a network of Jewish journalists from Central and Eastern Europe, in cooperation with the Polish Trade and Investment Agency.
Klimek told TFN: “The idea for the Kosher Expo came to me two years ago. I realized that more and more companies and people are interested in Kosher certificates and what stands behind them.
“I looked for partners but most people perceived it as a plan for business and I looked at it as a promotion of the Jewish tradition, ideas and believes that actually has an impact on food around the world.
“From time to time I was asked to talk about this topic during different conferences and after my lectures representatives of the companies were approaching me and asking about details, costs, ways that would help them to obtain kosher certificates.
“I realized that even though kosher certification in Poland has already existed for many years, knowledge about it is still not transparent and easily accessible.
“As a project manager with many different contacts in Poland and the Jewish world, I decided to create the first Kosher Expo in Poland, a platform that would bring everyone in one place – companies, kosher certificate consultants, buyers, sellers and everyone else interested.”
As a result, the 1st Kosher Expo offered congress-goers not only some of the best kosher food in Poland to sample, but also solutions in different areas connected to the kosher food industry including kosher certification, export of Polish products with a certificate abroad, and promotion of Polish manufacturers’ products and maximisation of profits from having a Kosher certificate.
Klimek added: “There is definitely not enough awareness about the kosher market and kosher certification process. There are a lot of myths and stories but nobody has ever done anything to clarify it.
“My expectation from the Kosher Expo is to inform as wide an audience as possible about the Kosher food industry and make them familiar with the steps they have to take in order to receive certification and promote their products outside of Poland.”
The Food Safety Congress is organized by the CEE International Food Standard (IFS) with the help and cooperation of the Warsaw University of Life Sciences and the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP).
Over 500 food experts and 250 companies from the Polish food industry discussed the quality and safety of food in Poland as well as innovative technologies, products, packaging and logistics solutions in Poland and abroad.