Hey, That’s Not Kosher! (Or Is It?)

Hebrew National ControversyThe beginning of summer is no time to find out that your favorite hot dog is not what you thought it was.

Hebrew National is being sued in Federal Court, the lawsuit alleges, because the company does not meet the Kosher standards that it advertises. (Gasp.) The lawsuit states that two third-party suppliers are not correctly following Kosher procedures. ConAgra Foods, the parent company, denies the allegations.

I’ve been a fan of Hebrew National Beef Franks for a long time. To me they taste like a hot dog should, and, although I’m not Jewish, I’ve always thought (or at least imagined) that “rabbinical supervision” would deliver a better quality product, or at least a more humanely-made one. Anyone of a certain age is bound to remember their 70’s era TV spots, and the power of those simple ads has stayed with me for decades.

Their current campaign fails to register with me, focusing as it does on the promise of delivering “Beefy Taste” which I personally find meaningless. I can hear a marketing department brainstorming ways to get “Kosher” to mean “Flavor”. Although they do their best to ¬†highlight the “no fillers” etc. aspect, to me they’ve diluted their message and unique difference.

I’m going to keep an eye out for further news on this lawsuit. And in the meantime, my grill will still be cooking Hebrew National brand. I’m a tough consumer to convert and an even tougher one to lose… because of the effectiveness of really good advertising (even long long ago.)

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