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MASHGI'AḤ (Heb. מַשְׁגִּיחַ; "overseer" or "inspector"), designation of the person entrusted by the rabbinate with the supervision of kasher butcher shops, food factories, hotels, and restaurants. He is to ensure that the food products sold or prepared in those places comply with the requirements of the traditional *dietary laws. The mashgi'aḥ must be an observant Jew and know all the particulars of the dietary laws. He is, however, not competent to decide on his own whether a product is kasher or not. In some places the mashgi'aḥ is also called shomer (i.e., "watchman").