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Oils and fats merchant

There were dealers in the Judengasse who sold oils and fats.
In the 17th century in particular this was a relatively selfcontained business which had split off from the spice trade (although it later reunited with this).
Formerly, fats and oils had a different significance and different uses to today.
Certain fats were needed to manufacture lights, and particularly candles.
As there was not enough wax, animal tallow was used for this.
At times the supply to the city seems to have fallen short of demand.
In 1612 the city council bought up all the tallow in the city and set up its own candle production.
This probably shut out Jewish fats dealers from the tallow trade.

The range of fats and oils was not limited to tallow products.
They also include foods such as butter, cheese, lard etc.
, and a broad range of domestic and exotic plant oils.




© Jüd. Museum Frankfurt 1992-2002 /  Sources