Peace talks begin, vigilante justice for an alleged child molester in Israel, kosher food goes fancy with Jewish food expert Gil Marks, and the history of Borscht Belt comedy is explored in the documentary “When Comedy Went to School.”

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  • I, too, was at the fancy food show this year. I was surprised by the growth in the number of bottled pickle vendors and flavored salt products, and it seemed as if there were fewer pasta sauce purveyers. The greek yoghurt craze shows no sign of abating, with many more spinoffs. I envied many of the new start-ups, such as the ecuadorian tea company based in Brooklyn, which had th ebacking of the Bill Clinton foundation and dozens of interns from Brown and Yale.

    But you know what really disappointed me? The Israel pavilion. The packaging of many products was bland and sucked. I expected much better from a nation of graphic designers and marketers. The staff at the Israel export pavilion was not energetic enough compared to Italy, Greece, or even Tunisia

    There were several heckscher agencies in attendance at the show. I took a moment to ask a rabbinical representative of the Orthodox Union O-U if he felt that their published statement against the Supreme Court of the US (SCOTUS) decision in support of same sex marriages and US federal law would cause a backlash and boycott, or result in manufacturers using a less poilitical hecksher agency. He said “no. ” I asked if he felt the O-U should separate its kosher supervision from its branch that makes statements on political and civil rights issues. He replied, “no.”

    And that was my visit to the fancy food show in NYc this summer.