Giving Precedence to a Jew

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There is a value in Jewish Law to do business with a fellow Jews.[1]

Choosing Where to Buy[2]

  1. There are three opinions as to when a Jew[3] must be given precedence
    1. Rabbi Yitzchak Weiss says must choose a Jew even if there is a significant difference in price[4]
    2. Chofetz Chaim says you don't have to take a significant loss[5]
    3. Others say you only have to give precedence to a Jew if they are equal price[6]
  2. If the non-Jew's store is closer, one should still make an effort to go to the store owned by the Jew[7]
  3. This law does not apply to a Jewish retailer as his income is based on him getting the best price[8]


  1. Rashi Vayikra 25:14 quotes from the Sifra a preference to buy and sell from fellow Jews. Gemora Avoda Zara 20A says if you have a carcass, it is better to give if to a Ger Toshav for free then to sell it to a non-Jew. Gemora Bava Metziah says if you can only lend one person, it is better to lend to a Jew interest free than to a non-Jew with interest
  2. See source sheet from Rabbi Ari Wasserman
  3. Chasam Sofer C.M. 134 notes that precedence is given to a Torah observant Jew as the Torah uses the word עֲמִיתֶךָ, your nation who is with you in the performance of mitzvos. Teshuvos V'Hanhagos 1:805 quotes that the Chazon Ish was strict to buy from a Shabbos observant Jew, even if it was further
  4. Minchas Yitzchak 3:129:3 based on a Shut Rama 10 discussing the story of the Maharam Padua's printing of the Rambam where Rama says must buy from the Jew despite the higher cost.
  5. Sefer Ahavas Chesed 5:5 where he explains that the Rama only meant when it was not a significant amount of money. This is based on Tosfos Avodah Zara s.v. V'Rebbe Meir who explains that the Gemora in Avodah Zara talks specifically about a carcass that doesn't have significant value
  6. Shut Toafos Reim O.C. 22
  7. Maharm Shik C.M. 31. Rav Shternbach in Teshuvos V'Hanhagos 1:805 notes that the poskim do not discuss how far of a distance one must go, and suggests that it is a Mil just like how far one must go to find a minyan. He does not this is by large or regular purchases, but a one time or small purchase can go to the closer store
  8. Maharam Shik C.M. 31