Reports of imminent kosher food sales during Shabbat Mets’ games appear to be off-base.
The Mets are disputing reports in local tabloids that a federal judge ordered the team to allow Kosher Sports Inc. to open its three stands at Citi Field on Friday nights and Saturdays.
Stories in the New York Post and Daily News “contain numerous errors and mischaracterize the court’s verbal ruling,” the team said in an e-mailed statement.
The president of Star-K Kosher Certification, which supervises the stands, also said the reports run afoul of the truth, telling The Jewish Week the company has “no intention whatsoever of being open on Shabbos.”
The developments relate to an ongoing suit between the Mets and Kosher Sports, the Englewood, N.J. vendor.
According to the Post, Judge Jack Weinstein, declaring that he “cannot get involved in a dispute over rabbinical law,” ordered the team and Kosher Sports to resolve a disagreement between themselves that also involves Aramark, another food-concession company.
The Mets statement says the team has not yet received a written ruling from Weinstein, “but we expect that it will require the parties to maintain the status quo (under which KSI products are not sold at Citi Field on the Sabbath) during the pendency of the litigation.”
Kosher Sports, the newspapers reported, is seeking $1 million in damages, claiming it has lost a half-million dollars in sales because the Mets prevent Shabbat sales at the kosher stands.
Not so, says the Baltimore-based Star-K. The suit concerns an economic disagreement between the vendor and the Mets, not sales on Shabbat, according to Rabbi Avrom Pollak, Star-K president, and Kosher Sports is in full compliance with Jewish law.
The kosher stands at the ballpark, he said, “have not been open on Shabbos, are not open on Shabbos.”
The stands remain under Star-K certification, Rabbi Pollak says.
Representatives of Kosher Sports did not return phone calls from The Jewish Week for comment on the suit.
Such items as franks, knishes and peanuts are available at the trio of stands.
Meanwhile, the kosher stands remain kosher, and they remain closed Friday night and Saturday.
If you want a kosher hot dog at Citi Field (for $4.75), the Mets’ next home game is Aug. 24. That’s a Tuesday evening.
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