What does Halal law states?
Halal practices mentioned in the Quran are as follows:
1- Only a Muslim man can slaughter the animal. In many texts, it is also mentioned that if Jews and Christians slaughter the animals following the rest of the steps (Halal procedure), the meat is halal as per the Islamic dietary laws.
2- The animal must be slaughtered with the help of a sharp knife with a cut to the jugular vein, carotid artery and windpipe.
3- The Quranic verse must be read while slaughtering the animal and is known as Tasmiya or shahada.
4- At the time of slaughter, the animal must be alive and healthy. The maximum amount of blood must be drained from the veins of the carcass.
5- Consuming meat of an animal which is already dead or other than the halal process is prohibited in Islam.
What is Halal Certification?
The Halal certificate is a document that guarantees that products and services aimed at the Muslim population meet the requirements of Islamic law and therefore are suitable for consumption in both Muslim-majority countries and in Western countries where there are significant population group who practice Islam.
Halal certification is a process which ensures the features and quality of the products according to the rules established by the Islamic Council that allow the use of the mark Halal.
It is mainly applied to meat products and other food products such as milk, canned food and additives.
For meat products Halal certifies that the animals were slaughtered in a single cut, thoroughly bled, and their meat have not been in contact with animals slaughtered otherwise and, especially, with pork.
Products that are Halal certified are often marked with a Halal symbol, or simply the letter M (as the letter K is used to identify kosher products for Jewish population).
Why cosmetics and pharmaceuticals are halal certified?
Cosmetics and pharmaceuticals need halal certification as these companies use animal by-products. For instance, alcohol is present in perfumes, pig fat is present in lipsticks and lip balms, cosmetic products use by-products of pigs, chickens, goats, etc. and these are termed as haram as per the Islamic laws. Therefore, the cosmetics and pharmaceuticals which are halal certified simply mean that they do not contain anything which is prohibited for the followers of Islam.
Why companies get their products halal certified?
Companies are getting their products halal certified so that their products can be exported to Islamic countries. It must be noted that the followers of Islam constitute 1.8 billion population of the world, i.e., 24.1% of the world’s population. In addition to this, only halal-certified foods are allowed in many Islamic countries.
As per several reports, the halal food market constitutes about 19% of the global food market. Thus, to serve the larger markets, to meet the demand and supply chain, many companies are getting their products halal certified.
From halal foods to cosmetics, another term is ‘Halal Tourism’. In this, the hotels and restaurants do not serve alcohol and only halal-certified food is served in their restaurants. In many hotels, spa and swimming pool facilities are separate for both men and women.
What issues have risen with halal certification?
1- The cost of the products which are halal certified increases as the certification process is not free of cost. Also, to get a halal certification, several modifications need to be made in the making process.
2- In several sectors, employment opportunities to non-Muslims are unavailable– Halal Slaughterhouse.
3- Halal certification is a discriminatory process towards the non-Muslims especially in the halal meat industry.
4- There’s no standard halal certification process to date. This means halal-certified products from one country may not be recognised in the other country. For Example, halal certification of India is invalid in UAE.
It is interesting to note that the halal-certified foods or products are not prohibited for other communities. Anyone following any faith can consume halal-certified food and products.