Israeli food manufacturers do not take full advantage of the growing kosher food market in the US, according to Menachem Lubinsky, general manager of Kosher Fest, the largest food fair of its kind held annually in New York City.

Lubinsky said that in 2005, some 2,000 new kosher products were added to the general food market in the USA, “but just 10% of these were products from Israel.”

The export of food from Israel to the US in 2005 amounted to US$125m and, the Israel Export Institute has estimated, US exports will total $150m in 2006.

Lubinsky noted that sales of kosher foods in the US in 2005vamounted to $10bn, a 10% increase over the year earlier.

“Some 18,000 supermarkets, out of 32,000 stores, sell kosher foods, since it was identified that the annual expenditures of purchasers of kosher foods amounts, on average, to $20,000, considerably higher compared with purchasers of non-kosher foods,” Lubinsky said.