Date: June 4
Correspondence between MF and IZ
Dear Dr. Ziderman,
I am excited to have found your site and foundation.
First of thank you for being at the forefront of this important Mitzvah for Klal Yisroel.
I very much agree with your foundation principals. As a wearer of murex Tekhelet for many years now it always bothered me a little bit that we were buying the snails from other countries and not trying to restart up the lost dying industry again in Eretz Yisroel.
I remember a few of the snorkeling trips in Chof Dor where we were able to see and touch (not take!) the Murex snails.
Also the chemical reduction process used by Ptil Techeilis always bothered me a little bit as these simanim used are not the same ones used in ancient times.
I cannot explain why, but I am very drawn to this mitzvah of Techeilis and to its return in Klal Yisreol. I am thinking because of my love for the water, the color blue, my mazal is dagim, and my last name being Fisher. Also my oldest son’s upcoming Bar Mitzvah is ironically Parshas Shelach.
I am curious where is the foundation up to in raising the murex locally in ponds?
Since you have been able to dye without the use of chemicals – is Ptil Tekhelet, R’Toporowitz, or Techeilis Lakewood Chabura considering in going in that direction?
I am interested in helping anyway I can.
IZ to MF: Dear Michael
Thank you so much for your encouraging letter.
As regards breeding the snails, the Ministry of Agriculture has recently approved a 3-year grant for the R&D to be conducted by our partner Prof Muki Shpigel of Haifa University.
As regards changing the dyeing process, we have heard nothing yet from the current manufacturers. We need public and Rabbinic pressure on them. Here too an R&D project is required, and a scientist with a lab to conduct it.
And mazal tov on your son’s barmitzva!
By the way, where do you live?
MF to IZ: I live in Monsey, NY and want to move to Eretz Yisroel which is currently difficult.
I am curious if there is anything to startup in this field.
Have you spoken to aquaculture industry people in Israrl or any kibbutzim?
I know there are a few doing aquaculture.
Where is the R&D project going to be located?
I imagine you must be friendly or know Dr. Sterman and can speak to him about their dying process.
Is your method slower or more costly?