The STa”M Project

Restoring transparency and reliability to the field of Sifrei Torah, Tefillin and Mezuzos

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The STAMP Certification

List of Stores selling STAMP-certified products

List of STAMP-certified sofrim

List of STAMP-trained magihim

I’d like to buy a STa”M product

The Need

What is STAMP?

STAMP is a nonprofit organization, operating under the direct supervision and guidance of the STa”M industry’s leading rabbonim. Our sole mission is to restore transparency and reliability to the world of STa”M.

Today, the field of STa”M operates without proper supervision, much like the field of kashrus did 100 years ago.

Baruch HaShem, the demand for STa”M products throughout the world is at an all-time high. Yet, the vast majority of Jews are using STa”M written by sofrim whom they have never met, who work independently with no organized oversight.

Yes, most sofrim are Yirei Shamayim, honest and well-intentioned. But everyone makes mistakes. That’s why halacha builds in a system of checks and balances.

The current severe lack of supervision in the field has resulted in a worldwide situation where STa”M products are sent to market without any reliable way of knowing whether or not they are kosher. Was it  written by a certified sofer? Were the materials used (i.e. klaf, ink, etc.) produced in a halachically reliable manner? Was it properly checked by a certified checker (known as a “magiah”)? Even if the answer to all of these questions is “yes”, how would the consumer know and thereby feel reassured that the STa”M item purchased is reliably kosher?

There are many, many stories of mezuzos in use for years that were subsequently discovered to be pasul or tefillin found to be invalid after decades of use. 

In response to this state of affairs, a group of prominent rabbonim and sofrim came together and decided: It’s time to change this situation.

What kashrus agencies did for our food, STAMP is now doing for our STa”M.

Our Mission

Guide

To provide guidance to the public for all STa”M-related needs.

Educate

To educate the public about STa”M and its halachic requirements, thereby empowering the consumer to know what to look for when purchasing.

Regulate

To create a worldwide STa”M market that is 100% transparent and regulated.

Repairing the State of STa"M:
The STAMP Difference

STAMP has developed a unique and comprehensive system  that supervises the entire process of STa”M production.

For Sofrim and Magihim
In order to become STAMP-certified, a sofer/magiah must pass a multi-level test with a written, oral and practical component, demonstrating hands-on knowledge of the relevant halachos. Certification must be renewed annually.
For Sofrim and Magihim
For Materials
An item submitted for STAMP certification must be written on klaf and with ink manufactured by a source approved by STAMP. In the future, when STAMP begins certifying full sets of tefillin, Sifrei Torah, Megillos and Nevi’im as well, this criteria will also apply to batim, retzuos and gid.
For Materials
For STa”M Articles
STAMP employs a staff of highly-qualified magihim, most of whom have been trained through STAMP’s magiah training courses. All items are checked (and fixed if/where necessary) by two STAMP-certified magihim. STAMP rabbonim also perform daily spot-checks of the magihim’s work. Once an item has passed through the full checking process, a unique ID card is issued for each individual item, displaying its full history and biography. The item together with its ID card are then sealed together in a tamper-proof transparent plastic sleeve.
For STa”M Articles
Computerized Check
In addition to the two checks done by the magihim, every item is reviewed by STAMP's state-of-the-art computer checking system. This software uses cutting-edge technology that not only identifies problems with staggering accuracy, but also employs numerous innovations that ensure the reliability of the item. This computer check is performed at three points: when the item first enters the STAMP checking portal, between the first and second magiah and, finally, upon completion of the checking process. With this, a STAMP-certified item has been checked a total of five times!
Computerized Check

STAMP aims to address the following challenges that STa”M consumers face:

The Sofer

How to verify that the STa”M was written by a certified sofer. A large percentage of sofrim are still not certified, and even amongst those who have received certification, there is an extremely low recertification rate.

The Materials

How to ascertain that the materials used - the klaf, ink, batim, retzuos, gid and paint - were manufactured according to halacha.

Transparency

Even if a STa”M item was written by a certified Sofer, with halachically reliable materials and checked by a certified Magiah, there has never been a transparent system available to consumers that verifies the fulfillment of all of these criteria.

The Checking Process

How to determine whether the STa”M was checked by a certified magiah (certified checker of STa”M). This issue is exacerbated by the severe shortage of qualified magihim (plural for magiah) in the world today, resulting in an inadequate or no proofreading process – a required halachic step for STa”M products.

Awareness

The Jewish public is largely uneducated on topics of STa”M. This results in hundreds of thousands of uninformed purchases every year and, thus, many consumers being sold problematic STa”M.

STAMP is under the direct guidance and supervision of four of the world’s leading authorities in the field of STa”M.

Harav Yaakov Zions Shlit”a

One of the foremost talmidim of rav mordechai friedlander zt"L, rav zions is sought after by Sofrim and magihim throughout all of israel and beyond for his psak and guidance in all areas Of sta"M. He is also the author of "Mishnas mordechai", the first-ever sefer published with the Piskei halacha of rav friedlander. It has quickly become one of the most authoritative seforim In the world of sta"M.

Harav Reuven Mendlowitz Shlit”a

A devoted talmid of rav mordechai friedlander zt"L for 13 years, rav mendlowitz is not only one Of the field's top magihim but has become one of the primary addresses for consumers around The world looking for guidance in procuring their sta"M. By authoring the book "Inside sta"M - a Complete buyer's guide," he laid the foundation for what would eventually become the central Theme of stamp: transparency throughout the sta"M industry.

Harav Moshe Uri Bloi Shlit”a

A full-time sofer for more than 40 years, rav bloi brings a unique approach that not only helps Magihim improve their checking skills, but also sofrim looking to enhance the quality of their Writing. Known for his vast breadth and depth of knowledge of hilchos sta"M, he gives Shiurim to magihim and sofrim alike in a different city every night of the week.

Harav Chaim Sperling Shlit”a

The senior member of the stamp rabbinic board, rav sperling has been one of the world's most sought after magihim (expert checker of sta"M) for nearly 50 years. None other than the gadol hador, r' yosef shalom elyashiv zt"L, regularly requested that rav sperling be the magiah to check and fix much of the sta"M that he stamped with his approval.

Rabbi Avraham Yechezkel Lessin

Executive Director

Stamp was founded by rabbi lessin in 5779 (2019). After growing up in a family that founded and contributed to tens of jewish charitable organizations, he received his first certification as a sofer from rav mordechai friedlander zt"L back in 2012. His ceaseless devotion to making the sta"M industry more transparent and reliable is a timely synthesis of these two passions.

How Else is STAMP Changing the Field of STa”M?

We work to eliminate the current global shortage of magihim, via specialized training programs.

We work to correct the historic underpayment of sofrim and magihim, as well as streamline the process by which the STa”M item gets from the sofer to the customer, reducing the number of intermediaries involved.

Safrus has traditionally been an isolated field, with both sofer and magiah working on their own. By creating a community of magihim who work together, STAMP’s system promotes feedback and professional development both to fellow magihim and to the sofrim whose work they check – helping to raise their professional standards and increase their job prospects.

Empowering the Public Through Education

Many people are not aware of the endless number of complex halachos involved in the production of STa”M. STAMP’s community education program helps to raise awareness of these halachic requirements and the assurance provided by a proper system of supervision throughout the production process.

It is important to emphasize that STAMP is not introducing a new set of chumros (halachic stringencies), but rather creating a system that ensures halachic compliance. Just like the field of food kashrus has progressed dramatically in the past 100 years, our goal is that, by raising public awareness through education, the demand for STa”M certification will transform the level of halachic compliance throughout the field, and provide the consumer with the best quality possible.

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The STa”M Project

S

ifrei torah

T

efillin

M

ezuzos & megillos

A nonprofit organization restoring transparency and reliability to the field of STa”M