An Israeli rabbi has declared giraffe meat and milk to be kosher
JERUSALEM (AFP) - An Israeli rabbi has declared giraffe meat and milk to be kosher, although his pronouncement is unlikely to have observant Jews clamouring to consume the exotic products, a daily reported on Friday.
"The giraffe has all the signs of a ritually pure animal, and the milk forms curds, which strengthened that view," the mass-circulation Yediot Aharonot quoted Rabbi Shlomo Mahfoud as saying.
The rabbi based his ruling on a recent finding by researchers from Bar Ilan University who took a milk sample while treating a giraffe at Ramat Gan safari park near Tel Aviv.
They found that the milk forms curds as required under Jewish religious law, a finding confirmed by another research institute, the daily said.
Giraffe meat is also considered ritually pure because the animal has a cloven hoof and chews the cud.
"Indeed, the giraffe is kosher for eating," said Mahfoud, who was present when the researchers made their finding.
Yigal Horowitz, chief veterinary surgeon at the safari park, is not overly worried by the development.
"This doesn't mean that tomorrow we are going to drink giraffe milk or eat soup made from giraffe necks," the paper reported him as saying. "After all, this is an animal in danger of extinction."