If you’ve gone shopping recently for matzos, you may have noticed something peculiar: there are matzos labeled “hand matzos” listed at one (significant) price, and other matzos also labeled as “hand matzos” that are substantially lower in price.
There’s a simple reason for this that you should be aware of: not all hand matzos are created equal.
Some places, like the Lakewood matzah bakery, have people who are actually doing everything by hand, from the kneading to the rolling to the various other aspects of matzah baking. Everything is done literally by hand.
Others, however, aren’t so.
While they make the matzos “by hand,” those hands are simply placing the dough in contraptions that knead the dough and roll it out. The only “hand” part of the process is placing the dough on what is essentially a machine.
Naturally, this hand-machine matzah is a lot cheaper. It takes a lot less manpower to operate a device that makes the matzah than hiring people to do everything literally by hand. It saves money, it saves time, and naturally, it makes the matzah cheaper.
But, if you are makpid about using hand matzos, know the difference between the two.