Exclusive: Mars bars go kosher

By Simon Rocker, June 4, 2009

Rabbis will be soon able to snack on one of the best-loved chocolate products when Mars Bars go under kosher supervison.

The London Beth Din’s kashrut division has signed a contract with Mars to certify products made in its Slough factory.

As well as the popular snack bar, the division has also certified Galaxy Block, Galaxy Ripple, Snickers, Minstrels and three flavours of Tracker Bars.

Although Mars Bars and some of the other items have previously appeared in the London Beth Din’s kosher guides, certification will make them more appealing to those who keep stricter standards of kashrut.

Rabbi Jeremy Conway, director of the kashrut division, said: “I am delighted that one of the world’s leading brands has recognised the significance of the kosher market and has opted to become fully certified by the KLBD.

“We know the kosher certification of these six classic products will be greeted with much excitement and we hope a wide range of further KLBD-certified Mars products will follow.”

Fiona Dawson, managing director of Mars Chocolate, said: “We want our products to be enjoyed by as many consumers as possible. We are delighted to be working with KLBD to give our consumers what they want.”
Certification guarantees rabbinical inspection of all ingredients and manufacturing agents used in a product. It also means that Mars will not change any of the certified products without Beth Din approval.

At the contract signing at Mars’ head office in Slough, Berkshire, on Thursday, Rabbi Jeremy Conway, director of the LBD kashrut division, said: “I never believed we could get these world-famous products certified. I was the most sceptical.

“When I started in the kosher business 20 years ago, Mars was always the product people asked me about. I never believed we would come to this day.”

Fiona Dawson said: “It’s nearly two years since we began negotiations. The team here have been so determined. We did not do a calculation as to how many Jewish people there are in the UK; this was always about achieving a standard.”

Last updated: 4:53pm, June 4 2009