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A rabbi should be consulted for specific clarification, interpretation and implementation of Kashrut, Jewish dietary law. This page is intended as an overview only.

"Kosher" means fit or proper.

Kosher food is fit to eat. Non kosher foods are called treyf.

There are three categories of kosher food. They are meat, dairy and Pareve.


For an animal to be kosher, it must have split hooves and chew its cud such as cow, goat and lamb. Non kosher animals include pig, horse and rabbit. Kosher fowl include chicken, turkey and goose. A Kosher animal must be slaughtered, by a specialist called a shochet, in accordance with Jewish law.


Milk and milk products such as cream, butter and cheese, from a kosher animal, are considered kosher food.


Foods that contain neither meat nor dairy are called Pareve. Pareve foods include fruits, vegetables and grains in their natural state.

Fish that have fins and scales are kosher and Pareve. Examples include salmon and halibut. Catfish, swordfish and all shellfish are not kosher.

A Pareve food will be considered meat or dairy if it is cooked with one of those foods. For example, when vegetables are cooked with meat they are considered meat.

Kosher dairy is not to be eaten at the same time as kosher meat or fowl.

The separation of meat and dairy also includes cooking utensils, pots and pans and storage containers. A kosher kitchen will have separate dishes and utensils for the preparation of meat and dairy.

A Kosher caterer can assist you in planning a kosher diet for your wedding guests and in purchasing kosher wine for the wedding reception.

Jewish Wedding Planner, 2007