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Temple Israel Backs Morrell Caterers

Temple president says he has confidence in embattled company to meet its contracts.

— which is facing allegations of and — on Tuesday got the backing of one of its partners, .

“We have had several frank discussions with Morrell Caterers and their advisors and we believe them when they tell us that Morrell Caterers of Lawrence is capable of meeting its contractual obligations to Temple Israel,” said James Rotenberg, the temple’s president. “The result is we are standing with Morrell Catering and its president, Scott Morrell, and we are reaffirming our faith in his ability to serve as Temple Israel's caterer.”

In February, Morrell’s chef and general manager accused the company in a lawsuit of storing and cooking foods such as shellfish and pork on the same dishes, pots and ovens as the kosher foods. Weeks later, former employees brought a $10 million lawsuit against Morrell, alleging the company stiffed them out of tips that was included as a service charge in contacts. The suit also alleges Morrell posed lower-quality liquor as top-shelf liquor.

“Trust in a person or institution can be destroyed in a moment. A simple accusation can harm a lifetime of work,” Rotenberg said. “We look forward to Morrell continuing to serve our Temple and its members for many years to come.”

Temple Israel’s backing provides some relief to Morrell, which is from one of its sites, Woodbury Jewish Centre.

“I am touched and honored to have this endorsement. It reflects years of mutual respect and a commitment to excellence,” Scott Morrell said in a statement. “It is my intent to continue to earn Temple Israel's endorsement every day we are invited to serve there.”

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