The 15th Malaysia
International Halal Showcase 4-7 April 2018 Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre (MITEC), Kuala Lumpur

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Are You Worried About The Ingredients in Your Food? Halal is Your Solution!
31 January 2017

For vegetarians who dedicate their lifestyle to choosing healthier meals, their choice of ingredient would be free of animal products such as meat and eggs. Meanwhile, Hindus are also wary regarding the kind of meat served or prepared since their religion does not allow them to consume beef. In the case of Muslims, we worry ourselves with whether a food or beverage is halal or not and the answer lies not only in the product but, what goes into it. Halal certification will ensure that manufactured goods is halal and this is given when the proper requirements are fulfilled and looked into which include the ingredients in the product. The Manual Procedure for Malaysia Halal Certification (Third Revision) 2014 highlighted that raw material or ingredient sourced from an animal must have a valid halal certification, sources of imported animal-based raw materials must be from approved plants by JAKIM and Department of Veterinary Services (DVS) and any raw material without halal certification shall be accompanied with complete specification (indicating material composition, flow chart and its raw material sources). Besides, during the production there must be no mixing between raw materials with non-halal sources or those with uncertain halal status. Though, some would question whether halal is the better choice especially to non-Muslims. Meat that is certified halal must come from an animal that is fed with vegetarian diets meaning that the feed does not contain animal by-product and the animal is not given growth hormones or antibiotics since they may contain pork-based ingredients. Halal also indicates the vitality of mindful practise for sustainable farming systems and humane treatment of the animals throughout the duration of their lives. According to an article by Alice Park in the Times which mentioned that Carol O’Neil, professor of nutrition and food sciences at Louisiana State University Agricultural Centre had noted that halal practises are considered to be more humane than conventional production and this may be important to consumers. Rasheed Ahmed, founder and president of the Muslim Consumer Group (MCG) affirmed this as he said that animals are treated as humanely possible since Islam does not allow putting the animals in a stressful environment. However, it must be evoked that halal is not limited to just meat. Halal is substantial in processing food and it would help consumers to enquire the production of such goods either to the authorities or the manufacturers themselves because Ahmed had stated that it is essential to educate the Muslims on how halal food is made.