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Section: Questions   Category: Halacha
Halacha - Cottonseed oil on Pesach
Submitted by anonymous  Answered by Rav Peretz Moncharsh
Question: Why is cottonseed oil considered kitniyot in Israel and not in the U.S.? Cottonseeds were never eaten, so why should a derivative of something never eaten be considered kitniyot? Am I going against a minhag in Israel if I eat products with cottonseed oil (i.e. machloket d'rabanan on a minhag - lekula)?

Your observation is very astute that cottonseed oil is generally considered kitniyos by Israeli Poskim but not by American Poskim. The issue basically is that the Israeli Rabbbonim say that cottonseed essentially resembles flaxseed and other seeds that are considered kitniyos, while the American Poskim hold that since the seeds are inedible (as you mentioned) the concerns of the original chumra do not apply. On very simplistic terms the issue is if you follow the reason and logic behind the chumra or the words of the Achronim literally.

Since the issue is more a machlokes in Halacha than differing minhagim, you may follow your Posek even if he permitts cottonseed oil and you live in Israel.

posted:2008-04-22 05:05:47

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