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  • The Halachot of Shmitta and Yovel

Shmitta Observance Questions


Rabbi Chaim Tabasky

6 Cheshvan 5768
I am wondering if commercially-grown mushrooms in Israel are considered produce of the Land of Israel just like fruits and vegetables are. Do they have kedusha, etc. ??? Since they are a fungus, really, and grown indoors in special ’bins’ I wonder whether they are like fruits and vegetables, and their scraps need to be separated and handled specially. Also, what do I do with table scraps of fruits and vegetables, like leftovers on people’s plates of the salad that they did not quite finish? Most often, these have added salad dressings, croutons, etc. Must these be separated, like peels and cores, etc. And, my pet parrots require fruits and vegetables as part of their normal daily diets. They fling their "table scraps" all around their cages, and they get mixed with their droppings, seed shells, etc. at the bottoms of their cages. Must I separate those, too, as kedusha?
Mushrooms are not considered produce of the lasnd and the laws of shmitta do not apply. Table scraps which are minimal, need not be saved. If enough is left on the plate that one would normally continue eating except for the fact that he/she is not hungry, I would put the food with the shmitta leftovers. It is not necessary to separat the vegetables from other foods. There is an opinion that all leftovers (that would not normally be saved) can be thrown away, and this can be relied upon if necessary (at a restaurant, for example). Food thrown about by pets or children need not be saved.
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