Irvington, NJ – In Time of Chanukah An Exclusive Inside Look At Ner Mitzvah

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     Yossi Lauber, Vice President of Ner Mitzvah with VIN News reporter Yossi Zweig in an exclusive tour in their Irvington, NJ plantIrvington, NJ – The days were of nondescript Shabbos and Chanukah candles are long gone and no one could be happier than Yossi Lauber, Vice President of Ner Mitzvah, the Irvington, New Jersey based company that is about to celebrate its 50th birthday.

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    What began as a small family business selling beeswax havdala candles and bedikas chometz kits has evolved into a major operation that sells not only a staggering number of candles for both Shabbos and Pesach but a full line of Pesach products as well.

    Lauber recalls the earliest days of Ner Mitzvah. Havdala candles were made by hand and instead of selling them in stores, the candles were mailed out with a card, asking the recipient to send payment back to Ner Mitzvah. While Ner Mitzvah still makes their candles by hand, the simple beeswax candles of 1961 have been joined by elaborate, hand carved paraffin candles, which are literally works of art.

    Another of Ner Mitvah’s early products was bedikas chometz kits.

    “My father would get wooden spoons, bags, candles,” reminisced Lauber. “But where did you get feathers? Luckily my uncle was a shoichet. My father went to my uncle and piled up bags of feathers. He washed them all by hand. When we got home from cheder, my father got all the kids around the table and we packed everything up, a few hundred every day. My father would go out and sell them all and the next day when we got home from cheder we did it all over again.”

    Today Ner Mitzvah offers a staggering number of choices. Chanukah candles, which once came in an anemic assortment of washed out colors, now burst with color as Ner Mitzvah offers gold candles, metallic candles, blue and white candles, decorated candles and even a musical Chanukah candle. Ner Mitzvah’s revolutionary jelled olive oil Chanukah Lights, individual inserts that are ready to light, make quick work of Chanukah candle lighting, it actually takes eight separate factories to produce and package all the components of this product.

    “After all,” says Lauber, “with a $2,000 leichter, a fifty cent glass takes away from the sheinkeit. This enhances the beauty of your leichter.”

    While their name suggests that Ner Mitzvah is only in the candle business, they also produce several innovative products designed to make koshering your kitchen for Pesach easier and safer. They are also improving last year’s sold out matza stand, a table designed to hold a box of hand shmura matza on top, with one shelf for hagadas and another for wine underneath, by adding a towel rack on one side and a hook for a shtreimel or a hat on the other.

    For the first time ever, Ner Mitzvah provides an inside look at its facilities. In an exclusive interview for VIN News, Yossi Zweig takes a tour of the Ner Mitzvah factory in New Square, New York and visits Ner Mitzvah’s New Jersey headquarters for a fascinating behind the scenes look at the company’s operations.

    Watch below a 15 Min. exclusive tour and interview.


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    11 Comments
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    13 years ago

    it’s a very good idea but why are Jewish items so high priced?

    Bukharian
    Bukharian
    13 years ago

    interesting thanks for sharing…

    Jewishmusicfan
    Jewishmusicfan
    13 years ago

    Very informative interview! This was very interesting to watch. I can’t wait to show it to the children. Yossi Z does it again!

    13 years ago

    reply to #1 , you dont have to buy it. did you see the amount of labor that goes into making these? i personaly do not buy them, i like doing it myself but for those dont want the mess it is a nice idea.

    monseyyid
    monseyyid
    13 years ago

    fortunately, Ner Mitzvah offers solutions to the 613 ‘problems’, otherwise known as ‘Mitzvos’, encountered on a daily basis. Gone are the days when Yidden used to roll their own wicks, kasher with a brick, or toil in any way to perform a Mitzvah. Perfect for this Instant Messaging, E-Z Pass generation.

    13 years ago

    Ner Mitzvah is the best do to quality variety and richness of products my favorties this year are the SHEMEN ZAYIS KREEGLE SET AND TZINOIRIS HAMSHIBACH.
    Keep up the good work with lots of Hatzlocho and Syata Dishmaya !!!

    enlightened-yid
    enlightened-yid
    13 years ago

    The first time ready oil was invented it was the best. You had to snap the glass cap and light it. Then they switched to rubber caps which leak and make a mess during shipping. Some company uses plastic cups instead of glass. The plastic ones almost caused a fire because it melted and started to spread. My expensive silver minorah was damaged. But the ready oil type is still the best even though it’s pricey. Who has time to fill every cup and place a wick and make an oily mess.

    Moshe808
    Moshe808
    13 years ago

    Yossi, job well done. Hatzlacha Merubah.