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September 9, 2020 11:14 am

With Israel Peace in the Offing, Abu Dhabi Tells Hotels to Offer Kosher Food Options to Guests

avatar by Barney Breen-Portnoy

The Emirates Palace Hotel, in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. Photo: Reuters / Hamad I Mohammed.

With Israel and the United Arab Emirates set to ink their recently-announced normalization agreement next week, hotels in Abu Dhabi have been instructed by local authorities to prepare for offering kosher meal options to guests.

In a letter issued on Tuesday, Abu Dhabi’s Department of Culture and Tourism advised hotel general managers in the Emirati capital ‐‐ known for its bevy of luxury accommodations ‐‐ to include kosher choices “on room service menus and at all food & beverage outlets in their establishments.”

The department further told them to “seek Kosher certification for handling kosher meals”; “designate an area in all kitchens for Kosher food preparation”; and “label Kosher menu items with a clear and visible label/reference with a recognisable symbol that denotes ‘Kosher’, as per acquired certification.”

Kosher certification services in the UAE will be overseen by the Orthodox Union (OU).

“As the Jewish community in the United Arab Emirates continues to grow and due to the influx of Jewish tourists, there is a need for kosher food and a certification that is internationally known,” OU Kosher CEO Rabbi Menachem Genack stated on Tuesday. “We thank the UAE government for reaching out to us to provide this service and are looking forward to partnering with the local Jewish community to provide kosher food and certification.”

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