Parshas Ki Setzei
“When you come into the vineyard of your friend and you shall eat grapes to satisfy your soul!” (Devarim 23:25)
It is a positive commandment that a hired worker must be allowed to eat while working from the thing with which he is working when that thing is something which grows from the ground and its work is not yet finished. About this it says “When you come into the vineyard of your friend and you shall eat grapes to satisfy your soul!”, and Chazal say that this refers to a hired worker who is working in a vineyard.
Amongst the roots of this commandment are that Hashem wants to teach Klal Yisrael to have a generous heart and good will and through this the blessing of Hashem will take effect on them. The truth is that someone who is strict with his workers that he should not eat from the object with which he is working while he is still working with that thing, and especially with things growing from the ground in which the owner should be rejoicing in the blessing of Hashem which He gave to him, shows with this that he has a very evil character, and we have already written many times that curses and evil things cleave to bad people and good things cleave to good people, each species finds its own type.
This commandment applies in all places and at all times both to men and to women. One who does not allow his hired worker to eat in the manner prescribed above, has transgressed this commandment.