New York…Jewish agencies throughout the US, Israel, and Russia report a record distribution of kosher food in advance of the holidays. In a survey of Jewish agencies throughout the tri state New York area, Kosher Today found that the number of Jewish families that needed assistance for food for the holidays may have toped 50,000 nationwide with nearly 35,000 in the five boroughs alone, 27,000 served by Met Council on Jewish Poverty, the largest Jewish social service serving the Jewish poor in the country. In Philadelphia, distribution topped 1500 families by the Jewish Relief Agency. Federations in other major cities also reported record-breaking distribution. Sources say that the increase was largely due to the recession and the aging of holocaust survivors and immigrants. According to Met Council, the largest distribution in New York was in Brooklyn where a record 17,672 received nearly 300,000 pounds of kosher food. Met Council’s figures do not include distribution by such groups as Tomchei Shabbos and Keren Aniyim. Although some food is donated by large purveyors like Empire Kosher Poultry, KJ Poultry and Sabra Salads, most of the food is purchased from money raised in the community. Met Council spent nearly $300,000 food for the holidays, including $33,250 for apples and $31,895 for grape juice. Reports from Moscow, St. Petersburg and Bnei Brak also included record numbers of kosher food distribution.