The 14th Malaysia
International Halal Showcase 5-8 April 2017 Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre KLCC, Malaysia

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Halal Meat: The Healthier Choice
22 January 2017

The debate of whether halal meat or conventionally-slaughtered meat is superior to the other has been a continuous one. People want to find the solution to this unanswered question mainly to prove the other party wrong, but what do experts and statistics say? The main arguments brought forth often relate to cleanliness and treatment of animals. Thomson Reuters states that the OIC currently imports of halal meat and poultry products reached US$ 15.3 billion in 2014, with Saudi Arabia accounting for US$ 2.5 billion, followed by Egypt (US$ 1.7 billion), the United Arab Emirates (US$ 1.4 billion), Indonesia (US$ 1.2 billion), Malaysia (US$ 950 million), Iraq (US$ 790 million), Kuwait (US$ 680 million), Jordan (US$ 610 million), Lebanon (US$540 million), and Oman (US$ 510 million). Across the UK and the United States, there are now several leading Halal organic meat suppliers, including Crescent Foods, a US based chicken and meat supplier; Euro Quality Lambs, a UK based lamb supplier serving Europe. A survey conducted by Bergeaud-Blackler et al. (2004, 2006) shows that the Halal meat products are chosen by French Muslims not because of religious obligation, but consumers also believe that Halal products were tastier, healthier and the Islamic slaughter method is less painful for the animal. Many debates have stemmed from comparing halal meat and conventionally slaughtered meat. Animals that are slaughtered conventionally are often stunned electrically before being slaughtered. This is done as it allegedly erases all feelings of pain that the animal might face while unconscious. This is wrong in the halal sense as stunning the animals may prematurely kill the animal-- making it a carcass before slaughtering—thus causing it to be haram. Stunning has also been found to cause an animal’s muscles to produce lactic acid which quickens potential bacterial infections. This happens because the presence of lactic acid increases the chances of the meat’s susceptibility to bacterial invasions. Furthermore, lactic acid affects the taste of the meat, a definite turn off. In addition to that, draining the blood from the animal contributes to combating bacterial attacks. Furthermore, slaughtering animals in Islam is relatively more humane. We say this because an animal that is raised to eventually be slaughtered must live in a humane and natural environment for all its life leading up to the slaughter. Most importantly, an animal has the right to live up to a certain age. We can clearly see that halal meat has some major perks when compared to conventional meat. It’s more humane, gives added cleanliness and is better tasting. Halal meat can be consumed by all people, regardless of religion. The ethical values instilled by Dhabihah may appeal to individuals who may not necessarily agree with the methods used to slaughter an animal in the non-halal industry.