The synagogue on the Upper West Side doesn’t do smoked fish

Something fishy is going on in an ultra-liberal synagogue on the Upper West Side.

The community of B’Nai Jeshurun ​​on West 88th Street canceled lox — and then lurched in its decree after realizing it was swimming against the tide of public opinion.

Rabbi Shuli Passow, the synagogue’s director of community engagement, told congregants in a Sept. 8 post that the fish would be uprooted from its catering options so “we can do our part to reduce the environmental impact of pollution and overfishing.” reduce”.

One online kibitzer dubbed the move “Loxdown,” and another mused, “What are they going to ban next, gefilte fish?”

“It’s a little Meshugga, a little Meshugga,” said Gary Greengrass, third-generation owner of famed Upper West Side smoked fish store Barney Greengrass. “There are other things to focus on.”

Emily Caslow, a fourth-generation member of Brooklyn-based Acme Smoked Fish — the city’s largest purveyor — and Upper West Sider, quickly stepped forward to teach the synagogue about the origins of salmon.

“I got in touch to let them know the salmon information was inaccurate,” Caslow said.

On Monday, the synagogue issued a “correction,” claiming it was unaware that most salmon was made from farmed Atlantic salmon.

Juan Paris makes a salmon bagel.
The synagogue said it scolded over environmental concerns.
Stephen Giovannini

“We thank those who brought this error to our attention and gave us the opportunity to correct our error,” the synagogue wrote in a post on its website.

“Second, some felt that we had implied that eating salmon was immoral or that BJ was boycotting salmon or salmon suppliers. This couldn’t be further from the truth,” the statement said.

Lox can now be served when the congregation shells out for kiddush, a light meal after the Sabbath service that traditionally includes bagels and assorted toppings.

But there was a catch.

The synagogue said it would refrain from offering the salty specialty if it paid for the kiddush, citing rising costs and “our desire to offer more plant-based offerings at communal meals.” The synagogue on the Upper West Side doesn’t do smoked fish


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