May a cook be paid to work on Chol Hamoed?
prohibited on Chol Hamoed except for certain
instances when Chazal permitted it, such as to enable
one to have the means to purchase Yom Tov necessities, as
will be”H be explained later.
baking is permitted on Chol Hamoed and accordingly
one may cook and bake on Chol Hamoed and be paid for
Does that mean that everything
permitted to do on Chol Hamoed may be paid for?
cannot make such a blank statement as each melacha
might be different.
cooking and baking, the Bi’ur Halacha writes
that we find in simon 533 that one may grind, chop
and cut wood, make beer and do every other melacha
for ochel nefesh (when necessary for Chol Hamoed)
and obviously one may hire people, because nobody is
expected to labor without remuneration, nor is one expected
to do all the above oneself.
concludes that one may hire people to bake and cook on
Chol Hamoed, if it is hard to find workers who will
volunteer their services.
The Bi’ur Halacha refers to paying
others to bake and cook but maybe I should do it for free?
needs extra cash to spend on Yom Tov one need not do it for
Indeed, if one is not short of money and does not mind doing
it for free, one should.
What is the bottom line regarding a
bakery and a cook?
may bake on Chol Hamoed and charge for bread and
cakes etc. A cook may cook in private homes and be paid for
If one is able to bake for Chol
Hamoed before Yom Tov, should one do so, or may one
l’chatchila leave it for Chol Hamoed?
Chayei Adam writes
that any melacha performed for food may be performed
on Chol Hamoed and one may purposely leave that work
for Chol Hamoed. In other words, one need not cook
and freeze prior to Chol Hamoed in order to avoid
cooking and baking on Chol Hamoed.
Does that also apply to hard labor
such as reaping and threshing?
does, because it is all for the sake of food and permitted
I have an orange tree in my garden,
are there any picking limitations on Chol Hamoed?
fruit is a melacha of kotzer - reaping, which
is permitted for the Chol Hamoed but not for after
Chol Hamoed. You may pick as much as you need for
Chol Hamoed and you need not calculate exact quantities,
rather pick generously and any leftovers may be eaten after
One may not
pick the required amount and say to himself that the oranges
remaining on the tree are of better quality I should pick
those for Chol Hamoed, because that’s cheating. This
“ploy” is permitted under certain circumstances but not in
If I see the oranges are spoiling
on the tree (birds, other animals, other people etc.), may I
pick them even though I won’t consume them on Chol Hamoed?
writes the following: A Jew shares a tree with a gentile and
the gentile picks his fruit on Chol Hamoed. If the
Jew refrains from picking his fruit the gentile will take
the Jew’s fruit and cause the Jew a loss. The Jew may pick
his fruit even though he will not benefit thereby on Chol
Hamoed. This heter is called davar ha’aved
– in face of loss and is permitted in certain circumstances.
May I pick apples from a tree even
when possible to purchase or borrow other apples?
One may do
a melacha for ochel nefesh on Chol Hamoed
even though one can obtain similar food without a
pick apples from a tree even though it is possible to
purchase apples or borrow from a neighbor.
travel by car to pick fruit even though one can walk to
a nearby store and purchase fruit.
pick peaches from a tree and not have to use canned
sift it, knead and bake it even though one has bread,
because freshly baked bread is tastier.
one has fruit at home, one may not pick additional fruit
unless the fruit at home is less fresh.