• New frontier for marijuana products: kosher certification

    By: Graham Johnson

    Updated:

    SEATTLE, Wash. - There's a new push for marijuana products approved for Orthodox Jews.

    A New York rabbi says he would consider approving some medical marijuana edibles.

    Ben Uzhansky, a general manager at Bel Mar in Bellevue, a new recreational marijuana store, sees that as good news.

    Uzhansky, who is Jewish, hopes marijuana products someday receive kosher certification.

    "There's a lot of negative stigma in the Jewish community when it comes to marijuana," Uzhansky said. "I think it will open that gateway and a new era."

    Rabbi Moshe Kletenik of Vaad HaRabanim of Greater Seattle leads the region's kosher supervising agency.

    He said he has not had any inquiries about certifying marijuana.

    Rabbi Kletenik said he would not approve recreational marijuana products, but would consider it for medical marijuana edibles prescribed by a doctor.

    The process would be similar to any other kosher food certification.

    "The issue relates to the food through which the marijuana is delivered, not the plant itself," said Kletenik.

    Uzhansky hopes kosher kush will be the next step in legalizing, and normalizing, marijuana.

    "We've been knocking down barriers ever since this whole process started," he said.

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