Global Halal harmonisation From August 2019

Global Halal harmonisation

Harmonisation of Halal is a long-debated topic. In 2010, the Standard and Metrology Institute for Islamic Countries (SMIIC) was set up to make advances in terms of Halal harmonisation.

Currently, each product or ingredient must be certified Halal for a specific market (e.g. Malaysia or Kuwait). At the moment there is no regulatory way to ensure compliance with global Halal, as no unified standard exists. The issue at heart is that Islamic jurisprudence disagrees on interpretations of Halal which is especially evident in the permissibility of alcohol in food, additives extracted from insects and stunning procedures for animals. For this reason, it is difficult to draft a unified global Halal standard which would be approved by each member of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).

But why is the development of a harmonised standard for Halal so important?
Currently, any manufacturer exporting Halal foods to a variety of countries must obtain certification for each target market. This translates into increased certification fees and barriers to trade which would not exist if a unified standard was in place. Efforts have been made in this direction but there is not yet a clear vision of a future where different members of the OIC come together and agree on one Halal standard applicable to all.

Contact: Anis Bouslamti
+44(0)1737 824277

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