Kosher for Passover Quinoa
2013-THE INTERNATIONAL YEAR OF …. QUINOA
Last updated: February 24, 2014
WHAT IS QUINOA?
Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wa) is a species of seeds of the Chenopodium or “goosefoot” family, and is botanically related to spinach. It was first brought to the United States from Chile nineteen years ago. Quinoa has been cultivated in the Andes Mountains for thousands of years, growing three to six feet tall despite high altitudes, intense heat, freezing temperatures, and as little as four inches of annual rainfall. Peru and Bolivia maintain seed banks with 1,800 types of quinoa.
Quinoa is Kosher L'Pesach and is not related to the five types of chometz grains, millet or rice.
IF IT’S NOT KITNIYOS, WHY DOES QUINOA NEED PASSOVER CERTIFICATION?
We have found that quinoa can, at times, be either grown near barley, or rotated with a barley crop especially in Peru. Furthermore, barley on occasion is used to cover quinoa during drying, and the bags used to transport the quinoa may have previously contained flour of chometz. Therefore, quinoa should only be used with reliable Kosher for Passover certification. During the growing season, STAR-K sends one of its mashgichim to a set of quinoa fields in Bolivia where there is no concern of intermingling with barley. STAR-K ensures that the farmers do not rotate their crops and that they use new bags to pack their crops. A mashgiach is then dispatched to the bulk packing plant in Bolivia and also the final retail pack in the U.S. to ensure the Kosher for Passover status of the quinoa and equipment.
Please click here for illustrations and pictures of quinoa production and here for our 2013 webinar and video.
For more information about quinoa on Pesach, please see this article on the topic and this information.
The United Nations named 2013 the International Year of Quinoa! Quinoa is one of the most nutritious foods on the planet, cooked like rice, gluten-free, and loaded with vitamins and minerals. Even NASA is considering quinoa for long-duration planetary space flights. Quinoa has become increasingly popular in the United States, Canada, Europe, China and Japan where the crop is not typically grown, increasing crop value. Between 2006 and early 2013, quinoa crop prices have tripled. What’s more, wholesale prices of quinoa rose by 88.2% over the last 12-month period.
PESACH 2014 – THERE IS STILL ENOUGH QUINOA FOR US!
With quinoa demand worldwide skyrocketing, ensuring a supply of reliably certified quinoa for Passover was a challenge. Working tirelessly with producers and distributors, the STAR-K team ensured that KFP quinoa would once again grace Pesach tables around the country.
STAR-K certified quinoa is premium Bolivian quinoa that is pre-washed and consequently has no bitter taste naturally found in quinoa. No checking is required.
Setton Farms 12 oz container, STAR-K-P required.
Natural Earth Products 16 oz box, STAR-K-P required.
STAR-K certified quinoa will be available at kosher grocery stores throughout the U.S., select Shoprite stores, and online. Stores can also order from Quality Frozen Foods 718-256-9100 or Setton Farms 631-543-8090.
Toronto, Canada – Kosher City Plus – STAR-K-P required.
Andean Naturals Brand, 55 lb bag, Star-K Symbol (No P Required), manufactured by Jacha Inti, Bolivia, sourced by Specialty Commodities, and bearing one of the following lot numbers.