Yeshivat Chovevei Torah Rabbinical School‘s Gendler Grapevine Project initiative continues to provide its students the opportunity to develop deep connections to food and the kosher slaughter process.

Earlier this year, students in the shechita class worked on sharpening their knives and took the first of several exams toward receiving their certifications. Rabbi Loike brought multiple species of rare birds that are deemed kosher or not, including a kind of partridge, into class.

In December, Jacob Siegel, one of the students in the Gendler Grapevine Grant Shechita Fellowship at YCT, participated in a shechita demonstration at the Hazon Food Conference. The Food Conference is a flagship event of the country’s largest Jewish environmental organization. Jacob assisted shochet Yadidya Greenberg and performed the shechita for the demonstration. The demonstration involved slaughtering three chickens, two of them factory-raised and one of them a heritage-breed. There were approximately forty participants in the demonstration who observed the difference between heritage-breed chickens and factory-raised chickens, and there was extensive conversation about the environmental and health implications of heritage-breed versus factory-breed chickens.

The demonstration got press coverage in the Forward on their the Jew and the Carrot blog, as well as on Hazon’s website. Click here to read the article, “Considering the Chicken.”