Sunday, March 15, 2015
The Streit's Matzo you buy this Passover will be the last produced in the Streit's factory on Rivington Street in Lower Manhattan.
The familiar pink boxes that dominate the Passover aisles in supermarkets this month are likely to be back next year, but they will probably contain matzos baked in New Jersey.
The cousins who now run their Streit's family business have accepted an offer to buy the aging five-story matzo factory on Rivington Street. They haven't decided on where to build a new plant but it's likely to be near their existing facilities in Moonachie, New Jersey.
The Streit's connection with Passover has a long history. In the 1890s, Aron Streit and his wife, Nettie, left Europe and came to America. In 1916, Aron opened his first matzo factory. There, on Pitt Street on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, Aron and his first partner Rabbi Weinberger made all their matzo by hand.
In 1925, Aron and one of his sons opened up a modern bakery in the same building on Rivington Street where Streit's stands today. A few years later, Aron's other son joined the business. With the family working together, the Streit's matzo bakery prospered and Aron bought three adjoining buildings to handle the growing business.
But in time, the neighborhood changed, the machinery broke down, and the family decided it was time for a change.
The story of Streit's matzos has been made into a documentary film that's screening on March 29 and April 7 at the JCC Manhattan. They're even providing a free box of Matzo at the screening.
Here's a video by the Wall Street Journal on the last day's of Streit's in Manhattan.
(A SPECIAL NOTE FOR NEW EMAIL SUBSCRIBERS: THE VIDEO MAY NOT BE VIEWABLE DIRECTLY FROM THE EMAIL THAT YOU GET EACH DAY ON SOME COMPUTERS AND TABLETS. YOU MUST CLICK ON THE TITLE AT THE TOP OF THE EMAIL TO REACH THE JEWISH HUMOR CENTRAL WEBSITE, FROM WHICH YOU CLICK ON THE PLAY BUTTON IN THE VIDEO IMAGE TO START THE VIDEO.)