BAVA METZIA 71 (1 Iyar 5784) - Dedicated l'Iluy Nishmas Reb Yakov Yosef ben Nosson Neta Friedman Z'L, in honor of his Yahrzeit. May Jack Friedman's exceptional Ahavas Yisrael and Ahavas Chesed be a Zechus for bringing peace and joy to his children, grandchildren and all of Klal Yisrael. Dedicated by his sons, Ari (Lawrence NY) and David (Jerusalem).


FIXING A PRICE (Yerushalmi Halachah 6 Daf 23a)

משנה אין פוסקין על הפירות עד שיצא השער


One should not fix a price and pay a seller (for produce that he will receive later) until the price of the produce has been established. (If he would do this and the price of produce would ultimately be above the price he paid, he has thereby earned money by paying early.)

היה הוא תחלה לקוצרים פוסק עמו על הגדיש ועל העבט של ענבים [דף כא עמוד ב (עוז והדר)] ועל המעטן של זיתים ועל הביצין של יוצר ועל הסיד משישקע כבשנו


If he harvested first, he may fix a price for a stack, for grape juice in the collection tank of a grape press, for the oil in the collection tank of an oil press, for lumps of mud (used to make pots) and for lime after it was set in the oven.

פוסק עמו על הזבל כל ימות השנה


He may fix a price for fertilizer throughout the year (even in the winter).

ר' יוסי אומר אין פוסק עמו על הזבל עד שיהא לו זבל באשפות וחכמים מתירין


R. Yosi: He may not fix a price for fertilizer until it is in the compost heaps. The Chachamim permit it.

פוסק עמו כשער הגבוה


He may fix a price with him according to the highest price (meaning to receive the smallest amount of produce for that price).

ר' יהודה אומר אע''פ שלא פסק עמו יכול לומר תן לי כזה או תן לי מעותיי.


R. Yehudah: Even without fixing a price, the buyer can say, "Give me for the lower price or give me my money!''

מלוה אדם את אריסיו חיטין בחיטין לזרע אבל לא לאכול


A person may lend his sharecropper wheat for wheat, when it is for sowing rather than eating.

שהיה ר''ג מלוה אריסיו חיטין ביוקר והוזלו או בזול והוקירו ונוטל מהן כשעת הזול לא שהלכה כן אלא שרצה להחמיר על עצמו:


As Rabban Gamliel would lend his sharecroppers wheat at the higher price even though it later decreased, and the lower price even though it later increased, and he would be repaid by them at the lower price. This is not the strict letter of the law, but he wished to be stringent on himself.

גמרא מהו לפסוק בשער של סירקי


Question: (The Mishnah taught that one should not fix a price and pay a seller until the price of the produce has been established.) Is it permitted to fix the price for a loan based on the pricing in an Arab market (that is not the official market price)?

ר' יוחנן אמר פוסקין ריש לקיש אמר אין פוסקין.


Answer: R. Yochanan permits it and Raish Lakish prohibits it.

רבי בון בר חייה בעא קומי רבי זירא לא מסתברא דיודי ריש לקיש לרבי יוחנן בשער סירקי של ציפורין שאינה פוסקת.


Question (R. Bun bar Chiyah to R. Zeira): Is it not logical to say that Raish Lakish would agree with R. Yochanan that it would be permitted to fix the price based on the marketplace of Tziporin, as it is different from other markets, in that its prices do not stop (but rather, they continue for a longer period of time)?

אמר רבי בון בר כהנא [דף כג עמוד ב] ותימה אנא איך רבנן פליגי בין פוסק לפירות בין פוסק למעות בין מלוה לפירות.


Question (R. Bun bar Kahana): I am astonished that Reish Lakish and R. Yochanan did not differentiate between - when a) the buyer gave money and the seller told him that he would give him the fruit at a certain time according to it price at that time; b) the buyer took the fruit and told the seller that he would later pay the seller according the price at that later time, which is more similar to ribis; c) the fruit owner lent the fruit on condition to be returned other fruit. Do we say that only in this third case, Reish Lakish and R. Yochanan disagree about fixing the price according to the Arab market; but lending money to be paid back fruit, which is like a regular loan, perhaps R. Yochanan would agree that the Arab market price is not considered the official price?

א''ר ירמיה במלוה אית פליגו אבל (בפונדק) [בפוסק] כל עמא מודו שאסור.


R. Yirmiyah: They disagree over a loan, but if he borrowed fruit to be paid back with money, all agree that it is prohibited.

אמר ר' יוסה בפיסוק אית פלגון אבל במלוה כל עמא מודה שמותר.


R. Yosa: They disagree over fruit that is to be paid back with money, but for a loan, all agree that it is permitted.

דבי ר' ינאי אמרי פוסקין על השחת


A student from the House of Rav Yanai: Once the crops have grown to a height that they could be used as animal fodder, it is permitted to fix the price.

[דף כב עמוד א (עוז והדר)] רבי יוסי בן חנינה אומר אף על חלות דבש.


R. Yosi ben Chaninah: Even when the honey is still in honeycombs, one can fix the price.

ר' יוחנן אומר כל העיירות הסמוכות לטיבריא כיון שיצא שער של טיבריא פוסקין:


R. Yochanan: All of the towns around Tiveria can fix a price as soon as the price is established in Tiveria.