February 22, 2012
Preseason victory for Mets-against a kosher vendor
The New York Mets can prevent a kosher food vendor from selling its wares on Shabbat, a federal judge ruled.
Judge Jack Weinstein of U.S. District Court in Brooklyn ruled Tuesday against Kosher Sports Inc. and ordered the Englewood, N.J., company to pay damages since it stopped paying its fees.
In his ruling, Weinstein said that Kosher Sports’ contract with the Mets did not give the company the right to sell concessions at all events, the New York Post reported. The judge did not deal with the issue of whether the stand was actually kosher if it sold products on Shabbat.
Kosher Sports, the owner of three stands at the Mets’ CitiField in Queens, signed a 10-year deal with the team in 2009, but it stopped making annual fee payments after the National League club refused to allow the stands to operate on the Sabbath.
The vendor launched its $1 million lawsuit two years ago, claiming that it had lost a half-million dollars in profits because its stands were not allowed to open on Friday nights and Saturday afternoons. Kosher Sports said it had received permission from kosher-certifying authorities to open the stands to sell food items on the Sabbath, but the rabbi who certifies the stands denied the claim.
The Post reported that a federal magistrate will iron out the details of how much the vendor owes the Mets and if the company will still have a contract with the team.
Kosher Sports’ stands at CitiField sell hot dogs, sausages, knishes, hamburgers, beer and other food.