Food Safety Week continues with surprise visits to supermarkets Rami Levy in Jerusalem, Mega BaIr and Shufersal in Tel Aviv. What they found was not so appealing. Check out the video on Mako- Arutz 2 or on Misrad HaBriut’s Facebook page.
If you can’t understand the Hebrew, here is a quick summary of what they found:
During the inspections, samples were taken of the ground meat for microbiological analysis. The ground chicken from Shufersal and Rami Levy had Salmonella growing and the ground beef from Mega Ba’Ir had a high general bacterial count as well as coliform bacteria– a sign of fecal contamination.
Rami Levy’s response: The deficiencies were apparently due to the pressure of the holidays. The deficiencies noted in the inspection report were corrected immediately.
Mega BaIr’s response: The report speaks of a specific problem in only one store. A follow-up inspection by Misrad HaBriut showed that most of the deficiencies were corrected. Regarding the bacterial testing, that is to be expected in a raw product that must be cooked before eating- it does not affect the quality or safety of the product.
Shufersal’s response: We feel that preserving the quality of our products is of the utmost importance. We therefore strictly supervise each store to ensure that they comply with Misrad HaBriut’s standards. We will review the inspection report and correct any deficiency that needs to be corrected.
Yediot Achronot published an article this Friday comparing prices for various Pesach items in different supermarkets in various cities. Unfortunately, I don’t have the full article- just a few photographs from Rami Levy’s Facebook page– but here are the results (from the cheapest to the most expensive):
Greater Gush Dan (48 products):
Modiin (56 products):
Haifa (57 products):
Jerusalem (36 products):
Remember when we used to get a 5 pound package of matzah with our Pesach shopping? This year two stores are offering a free matzah deal:
They aren’t the best deals, but they do bring back memories!
Here are pictures of the latest deals in Shufersal. The Pesach products are coming out in full force now so watch the prices go up. For example, last week Shufersal brand KLP shoko powder was 8.90 shekels, this week it is 9.90 shekels. As requested by a reader, I have tried to photograph the actual hashgacha and I am trying to emphasize kitniyot-free products.
Sanfrost vegetables are almost all KLP- they have different statuses regarding shmitah so check that as well.These new diet puddings didn’t make it until Pesach. Kitniyot.Kitniyot and Gebrahkts free.Kitniyot and Gebrahkts free.All of the standard Ashkenazi cookies- but with kitniyot. Let the buyer beware. (The TamTams are not KLP)This shouldn’t have kitniyot but it doesn’t say yes or no.Kitniyot.Kitniyot.Kitniyot.No Kitniyot!No Kitniyot!No Kitniyot!Again, shouldn’t have kitniyot but it doesn’t say either way.No Kitniyot!Unfortunately, only the giant bag was KLP. Maybe the smaller ones will be in stock later on. No KLP cat food at that time.No kitniyot or gebrahkts.No kitniyot.Kitniyot.Sorry, can’t tell if it has kitniyot or not.No kitniyot or gebrahkts!
I didn’t have much time to go through all of the sale items, but here is a sampling of what I did find. I find that once the KLP aisle is created, the prices on these items start to go up. Get them now while the prices are low.
These are gone before you know it in the store so I bought four boxes.
If you need to replenish your supplies, here are some of the current sales on Chanukah essentials:
Clik bags- 3 for 10 shekels (limit 2 purchases) (for playing dreidel)
BB pretzels/dakim dakim- 5 shekels
Tomatoes, red/white potatoes, carrots, fennel, beets- 2.90 shekels/kg
Red/yellow/green/Naharia peppers, green spicy peppers, eggplant, sweet potato, kohlrabi- 3.90 shekels/kg
Expires 19 Dec 2014.
Osem self-rising flour- 5.90 shekels
Sufganiot- 6 for 10 shekels
Mini sufganiot- 8 for 10 shekels
Donuts- 3 for 10 shekels
Fancy sufganiot- 3.90 shekels each.
Expires 28 Dec 2014.
White potatoes, white cabbage, onion, beets, kohlrabi, carrots and fennel- 2.90 shekels/kg
Expires 19 Dec 2014.
Canola oil (1 litre)- 3 for 19.90 shekels (expires 19 Dec 2014)
BB pretzels/dakim dakim- 2 for 14.80 shekels (expires 26 Dec 2014)
Sufganiot- 1 shekel each. Maximum 10 sufganiot per purchase.
Expires 27 Dec 2014. To find a store near you, click here.
Small sufganiot- 1 shekel each.
A package of latkes/levivot- 10 shekels.
Carmit chocolate coins- 3 for 14 shekels
Carmit Chanukah gift package- 2 for 14 shekels
Mega canola oil (1 litre)- 3 for 18 shekels
Osem self-rising flour- 5 shekels (limit 1)
Onion, white potatoes,and white cabbage- 1.90 shekels/kg (limit 6 kg)
Expires 22 Dec 2014.
(If a store isn’t listed, I didn’t see any Chanukah-specific sales)
In an effort to increase sales after their 156 million shekel loss last quarter as well as the lowering/cancellation of import taxes on many food products, Shufersal has been increasing the number of generic products that they sell. Diapers are the newest addition to the lineup. As you can see below, the price can’t be beat- especially compared to premium brands Huggies and Pampers. As every parent knows, however, sometimes diapers can be too cheap- there are few things worse than a diaper that can’t hold in what it is meant to hold in.
Readers let us know- are these diapers worth the price or are they not really a bargain?
Not satisfied with creating a coffee revolution, Cofix founder Avi Katz will now be taking on supermarkets and food waste. Starting in Tel Aviv in April, he plans to open 40-50 small (150-400 square meter) stores where every product will cost 5 shekels- meat, vegetables, canned foods, cleaning products, and even housewares. It is not meant to be a full service supermarket but will have the basic items and is in negotiations with food manufacturers to produce a product that will be appropriate for his stores. These products may be in smaller sizes which is something he feels is to be desired. Too many people are tricked by promotions to buy large sizes and in bulk to save money but end up throwing the food out or it rots before they use it. If people buy less up front and in sizes that are appropriate for them at that time, there is less waste and that means more money saved. Israel leads all of the OECD countries in the amount of food waste that we produce- 350 shekels worth each month.
With Shufersal reporting losses and their increased marketing of the Shufersal brand as well as the supercofix announcement, it seems that businesses are starting to get the message that consumers are fed up with price gouging. Let’s hope that all of the supermarkets will feel the need to compete with supercofix and bring lower prices for everyone.