The surprising initiative is expected to set a new Guinness record as the longest Shabbat table in the world. Hundreds of people, including public figures and journalists from Israel's ultra-Orthodox sector, were invited to sit at the huge table and enjoy a Shabbat meal, just before Shabbat.
Preparing for a very special Shabbat meal (Photo: Aviv Hofi)
The idea to set up the record-breaking table is the fruit of cooperation between the Coca-Cola company in Israel, which is based in Bnei Brak, and haredi advertising agency Meimad.
"The haredi public as a consumer sector could not identify with the company's regular messages, like sports, beach or music, which do not match its world of values," notes haredi advertiser Menucha Stern. "Our decision in the past seven years is to change our approach and come from a spiritual place."
Hundreds of dishes on one table (Photo: Aviv Hofi)
The world's longest table is competing for the title of the world's best laid table as well: It includes all Eastern European Shabbat dishes – from kugel to calf's foot jelly.
How familiar is the haredi sector with the term "Guinness records"?
"It's a big public and there are different styles," says Stern, "but in general the mainstream is definitely familiar with it.
"There have already been several initiatives in the sector that have taken the Guinness Books and removed the problematic things, and today you can find those books in many haredi homes. And even those who don't have it at home are familiar with it. After all, it's an international concept, not a secular concept."
The huge table will be dismantled in later on due to lack of space, but company officials are not ruling out the possibility that in the visitors and customers will be invited for a Shabbat meal at the record-breaking table sometime in the future.