WASHINGTON (Jan. 18)
The Soviet authorities moved early this year to head off the annual demands that Russian Jews be given adequate facilities for obtaining matzoth for Passover. The Soviet Embassy here distributed today copies of a Novosti News Agency press release announcing that the baking of matzoth had begun in Moscow on Jan. 7 – three and a half months before Passover.
According to the Novosti report, up to three tons of matzoth is rolling off the conveyors every day under supervision of a mashgiach (rabbinical supervisor). The agency asserted that “on the first day (Jan. 7) matzoth were bought by hundreds of persons, both believers and non-believers.” The agency said that other Soviet Jewish communities had begun preparing for matzoth baking.
The Soviet agency quoted Mikhail Mikhailovitch, whom it described as “head of the Jewish community,” as stating that “unlike past years, this time we began baking matzoth fairly early – three and a half months before the Passover. This will allow us to supply matzoth not only to community members but to all those wishing to receive it.”