Chai Kosher set to close May 3

Kosher consumers in Toronto will have plenty of chicken, despite the impending closure on May 3 of Chai Kosher Poultry, one of the city’s largest suppliers, industry insiders say.

Moishe Friedman, president of Marvid Poultry in Montreal, said he supplies many kosher retailers in Toronto and has the ability to increase his company’s capacity to 200,000 chickens a week if necessary.

“Consumers will have as many chickens as they need. There will be no shortage or price increase,” he said.

Marvid Poultry carries hechshers from the Montreal Jewish Community Council (MK), the Toronto-based Kashruth Council of Canada (COR) and the U.S.-based Orthodox Union (OU).

Chai representatives refused to comment about the company’s closing after news about it had spread on social media over the weekend.

But industry sources said it had received an offer to buy the land where its plant is located, in the Port Lands area south of the Gardiner Expressway and near the eastern waterfront.

Richard Rabkin, director of marketing and business development for the Kashruth Council, which supervises Chai under the council’s COR hechsher, said he values the Kashruth Council’s longstanding relationship with Chai and regrets its closing.

He stressed, however, that Toronto will have a plentiful supply of kosher chicken.

“We are also looking into some alternative sources. Our main objective is for [kosher consumers] to have access [to what they need],” he said.