Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon Discusses the Certification Process for Kosher Supervision of America


The son of Holocaust survivors, Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon was born in 1950 in Massachusetts. He attended the Hebrew Day School in Worcester and graduated high school in Montréal. While in Canada, Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon received his rabbinical ordination from the Rabbinical College of Canada. In 1969, Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon departed North America for Israel where he volunteered in the Chabad Outreach Program in Jerusalem for one year.

KSA-Kosher-Food5 According to Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon, Kosher Supervision of America (KSA) is the largest accepted and recognized kosher certification agency in the Western United States. Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon points out that it is a prestigious and honorable distinction granted to only select kosher certification agencies. KSA is proud to be featured on this short list of recognized and reliable organizations.

Q: What’s the current status of the food industry?

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: New food labels misrepresent processed foods high in fat and/or sugar as “fresh,” “natural” and “healthy.” In fact, these foods are often high in sugar and fat.

Q: How has this trend occurred?

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: Because of shortcomings of food label regulation by the government and the food industry.

Q: How do health-conscious consumers avoid this confusion?

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: Even in this age of misleading food labeling, one regulation in the food industry offers a clear definition: kosher food certification.

Q: How many American companies produce kosher foods?

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: There are more than 10,000 kosher-producing companies in the U.S., according to sources.

Q: So there must be quite a number of products available to the American public.

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: Very true. More than 135,000 kosher products for 12 million American consumers who purchase kosher food particularly because it’s kosher.

Q: What kind of financial results does kosher certification provide for the food industry?

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: The kosher market for the U.S. food industry generates more than $12 billion each year.

Q: Is kosher certification labeling common in supermarkets?

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: In various studies, researchers have determined that the term “kosher” is used for more food products than “premium,” “organic” or “natural.”

Q: What about the KSA label?

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: Stroll down any supermarket aisle and the KSA certification will be visible on a number of American foods that have been certified kosher.

Q: Why do supermarkets prefer certified brands?

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: Supermarkets favor kosher-certified brands because it gives the product a viable edge that makes it sell more quickly.

Q: Are most of these consumers Jewish?

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: The opposite is true. Only 8 percent of these kosher consumers identified themselves as religious Jews.

Q: Why choose kosher foods then?

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: Most kosher consumers select kosher foods for reasons related to taste, food safety, health, lactose intolerance or vegetarianism.

Q: How do these kosher foods become certified?

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: More than 300 kosher certification agencies in the United States diligently monitor the food production so that kosher products are indeed kosher. KSA is chief among them.

Q: What is the overall mission of KSA?

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: KSA strives to ensure that each product labeled with a KSA symbol will meet all the standards of Kashrus.

Q: To what does KSA attribute its success?

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: KSA is built on a foundation of excellent customer service and positive attitudes.

Q: Who works for KSA?

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon: KSA is proud to feature a hard-working, dedicated staff of renowned experts, including experienced rabbinical authorities. Many of these staff members possess more than 30 years of experience.

Rabbi Binyomin Lisbon is the leading administrator of KSA Kosher.

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