When I lived in Krakow as a Fulbright Fellow from 1993-1994, the thought of having a real kosher restaurant in Krakow, let alone kosher schechita, would have been a fantasy. (The topic of “kosher” restaurants in Krakow in the 1990’s deserves its own long essay.)
Today, thanks to a thriving tourist industry, the profittable exports of Kosher meat, and to some extent consumption by the local community, Kosher food and locally produced meat is available at several establishments. In today’s Krakow Post there is a comprehensive discussion of the issues invovled in the Polish Kosher Meat ban, and a great interview with JCC Director Jonathan Ornstein, who commented:
I don’t eat meat and would like to live in a world where no one else does either, but I don’t accept the idea that a country where you can go out and hunt for pleasure, also something expressly forbidden in Judaism, a country where you can take a live carp home in a plastic bag and allow it to slowly suffocate as you wait in line at the supermarket checkout before Christmas, should outlaw a form of killing that was devised thousands of years go to be humane.