Five hunks of Hebrew National salami lie side by side in a glass display case at Ben's Kosher Delicatessen in midtown Manhattan. When compared with the crispy corn dogs and enormous latkes, they don't look like much. But the takeout counter guy is relieved he has any salami to sell at all.
For the last several months, a shortage of Hebrew National products has hit kosher restaurants and food distributors across North America, forcing some to fill the gap with other meat products -- ones that don't "answer to a higher authority," as the Hebrew National famous advertisement put it.
The shortage comes at what should be a time of celebration, as Hebrew National, which was founded on Manhattan's Lower East Side, celebrates its 100th birthday.