Halal Food: What Is Halal Food?
Halal Food: Now food is popular for almost everyone you come across and of course it’s a source of life. The medium of Halal food is no different and can be found all over the world. The diverse range of Halal food and cuisine are amongst the most popular types of foods around the world and is big business. Here in the United Kingdom you can easily find outlets, shops, butchers, stores, caterers, festivals, restaurants and takeaways that stock and sell Halal food.
There’s A lot Of Talk About Halal Food, But What Is Halal?
One definition of the Arabic word Halal is:
“Any element that Muslims are not allowed to or prohibited to consume in line with the Shariah (Islamic law)”
From a universal general viewpoint every food type or component is Halal and permissible. However if there is a prohibition mentioned in the Quran or Hadith then those types of food cannot be consumed. A classical example of food that cannot be consumed by Muslims is pork as it is considered Haram (non permissible).
“He hath forbidden you only carrion, and blood, and swineflesh, and that which hath been immolated to (the name of) any other than Allah. But he who is driven by necessity, neither craving nor transgressing, it is no sin for him. Lo! Allah is Forgiving, Merciful” (2:173)
“O ye who believe! Eat of the good things wherewith we have provided you, and render thanks to Allah if it is (indeed) He whom ye worship” (2:172)
Exploring Halal Food
Within the Islamic faith there are guidelines which discuss issues around food consumption. Muslims are meant to eat food which is tayyib (wholseome), pure, nutritional and healthy. Islamic thought negates that Muslims should consider the environment around them and look after their bodies. Healthy food consumption is a part of having a beneficial lifestyle and less chances of contracting sickness. A holistic diet can help sustain life and physical activity.
All foods are considered Halal except the following (which are Haram):
- Alcoholic drinks and intoxicants
- Non-Halal Animal Fat
- Enzymes* (Microbial Enzymes are permissible)
- Gelatine* – from non-Halal source (fish gelatine is Halal)
- L-cysteine (if from human hair)
- Lipase* (only animal lipase need be avoided)
- Non-Halal Animal Shortening
- Pork, Bacon / Ham and anything from pigs
- Unspecified Meat Broth
- Rennet* (All forms should be avoided except for plant / microbial /synthetic – rennet obtained from Halal slaughtered animal is permissible).
- Stock* (a blend of mix species broth or meat stock)
- Tallow* (non-Halal species)
- Carnivorous animals, birds of prey and certain other animals
- Foods contaminated with any of the above products
On the authority of Abu Ya’la Shahddad ibn Aus, the Messenger of Allah said: “Verily Allah has prescribed proficiency in all things. Thus, if you kill, kill well; and if you slaughter, slaughter well. Let each one of you sharpen his blade and let him spare suffering to the animal he slaughters” (Muslim)
Halal Food & Slaughter Methods
When eating Halal food if the food is derived from meat then it has to have had gone through a specific process. The meat slaughter has to be undertaken according to Islamic law. Some of the most popular meats consumed by Muslims are chicken poultry, lamb, beef, fish and goat. When an animal is slaughtered a ritual is undertaken called Zabah or Zabihah which are Arabic terms. The Halal meat slaughter process is very similar to the Jewish kosher meat and the Shechita method.
The Islamic slaughter method requires any individual slaughtering the meat to use a sharp knife or tool and make the process as humane as possible. A single swipe is required which severs the jugular vein, carotid artery and windpipe. All blood has to be drained from the animal. Simultaneously when swiping the knife the Shahadah should be recited or tasmiyah. The Shahadah is the Muslim profession to faith and is considered one of the five core pillars of the Islamic faith.
-In an incident narrated by Rafi’ bin Khadij, the Prophet told Muslims who wanted to slaughter some animals using reeds, “Use whatever causes blood to flow, and eat the animals if the Name of Allah has been mentioned on slaughtering them…” (Bukhari)
Animals and food that are prohibited are those that have been killed by strangling or by a violent blow, or by a headlong fall.
The components below should be adhered to in relation to Halal food slaughter:
- An animal should not be dead prior to slaughter
- Muslims should perform slaughter
- Any flowing blood of the carcass should be completely drained
- Choice of modern and in vogue method has to be considered with caution and, it should be in line with Islamic principles
Halal Food Around The World: Halal Soy Sauce In Japan
Last year in Japan Muslim students in Oita contributed to the process of producing Halal soy sauce. Soy sauce is popular in Japanese and Chinese cuisine. A University in Oita and a seasoning production company joined forces with young Muslim students to produce the sauce. The main aspiration of this project was around exporting the product to markets across the Southeast Asian regions.
The soy sauce being developed by Fundokin Shoyu Co. and Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University uses preservatives instead of alcohol to curb bacterial degradation. The alcohol generally used in creating most soy sauce in mainstream markets goes against Islamic consumption laws and guidelines.
The Japanese firm initiated the research process by taste and packaging preferences through undertaking interviews with Muslim students from Southeast Asia at the university the year prior, and in spring 2017 began preparing 120 kiloliters of Halal soy sauce on a designated production line.
Halal Food & Halal Travel In Korea
Diversifying South Korea’s repertoire of visitors the Korea Tourism Organization (KTO) has been planning to attract over a 1 million tourists from Muslim countries since last year, up from what was roughly 980,000 in 2016.
The 2017 figure was a 33-percent increase from 2015. Of the visitors, 740,000 were from Asia, largely Malaysians and Indonesians; 160,000 were from countries in the Middle East; and 80,000 came from other regions including the Americas and Africa.
The KTO is hoping to achieve a new milestone by building more Halal restaurants in the country.
In 2017 the project, dubbed Muslim Friendly Korea, aimed to bring up the number of Muslim-friendly restaurants to 170 from 135. There were four certifications for Halal restaurants – Halal certified, self-certified, Muslim friendly, and pork-free.
The KTO also published a handbook to better host Muslim tourists for local governments and the tourism industry that includes information on the Muslim tourism market, Halal foods, prayer rooms, and emerging trends in Islamic countries.
Throughout last year, the KTO operated business-to-business consulting booths for local tourism companies at exhibitions and international fairs.
“We’re more desperate than ever to find new markets,” said Park Jung-ha, the KTO’s international marketing director. “We’ll bring up the number of Muslim tourists to over 1 million to help diversify Korea’s tourism industry.”
Oman Eyes Share Of The Halal Food Industry
Oman has several advantages in tapping the growing market for Islamic or Sharia-compliant products and services across the world, according to Islamic finance experts, who attended a major conference there last year.
“Islamic food or the Halal industry is (valued at) about over $2 trillion a year,” said Sulaiman Al Harthy, deputy chief executive officer (Islamic Banking Group) at Bank Muscat. If Oman can get 5 percent of the total Halal food industry, it will be enormous.”
The Sultanate’s private sector can work with experts in Halal food manufacturing and become an export base to meet growing demand from across the world.
The experts also noted that Oman has several advantages in attracting investment in Sharia-compliant industries, which include state-of-the-art infrastructure and incentives for investors.
Oman Has The Potential To Take Some Of The Halal Food market Share
“The Sultanate is in a good position to take advantage of the potential,” noted Al Harthy, while attending a panel discussion on driving Oman’s economic development and diversification plans through Islamic finance at the IFN Oman Forum and Dialogue last year.
The previous move of the Capital Market Authority to grant initial approval for OMR300 million of sukuk helped provide finance for Sharia-compliant projects. Since Islamic institutions and instruments can only fund Sharia-compliant ventures, the corpus from these Islamic bond issues will help the industry. Also, these issues will also help build benchmark yield curves.
In fact, the total assets of Islamic banks rose by 36.65 percent to OMR3 billion by December-end in 2016, from OMR2 billion for the same period of 2015. Similarly, financing by Islamic institutions surged by 36.1 percent to OMR2.4 billion by December-end in 2016, from OMR1.7 billion during the same period of 2015. Also, customer deposits were up 40.9 percent to OMR2.1 billion from OMR1.5 billion during the period under review.
30 Images Of Amazingly Tasty Halal Food
Food that could be easily traced to its source — from farm to fork — has become a rarity due to ingredients being sourced from all over the world. However it is important to note that blockchain technology is a potential platform which could allow Halal meat to be traced fully in the supply chain. This is of importance as it will put many peoples minds to rest. Sourcing Halal meat has been a issue of grave concern for Muslims. Also in the contemporary world its not just a question of permissibility, but also Tayyib, or wholesome.
The Muslim diaspora around the world spent an approximate $1.24 trillion on food and beverage only two years ago, a growth of 6.2 percent from the previous year, and is expected to reach $1.93 trillion by 2022, a CAGR of 7.6 percent from 2016.
Muslim Population Soon To Cross 2 Billion Globally
With a total population nearing 2 billion Muslims worldwide there is an increasingly affluent section of Muslim-minority countries & companies which have responded to the demand for Halal Food and beverage.
Simultaneously there has been an convergence with the requirement for quality food by non-Muslim consumers wanting organic and sustainably sourced food. This has led to Halal food being increasingly popular among non-Muslims, such as in China and Europe, while Halal Food manufacturers are catering to the trend for both religiously-permissible food and organic food. This has been a recipe for success in many markets, particularly in the U.S. and the U.K.