Halal Foods

Photo taken by me – Halal food sign outside a Manchester restaurant
Preston, England
November 8, 2015 7:17am CST
Many Muslim restaurants, take-aways and food suppliers proudly declare themselves Halal but surprisingly few non-Muslims know what the term means. Halal is actually very similar to Jewish Kosher in setting strict regulations on what foods can or cannot be slaughtered, prepared, sold or consumed. Pork is out, as is any meat that bleeds such as some rare steaks. All alcohol is strictly non-halal, (though allowed in much kosher law). Roadkill is unacceptable as is any meat not blessed in the name of Allah when being slaughtered. Sunni Muslims are more relaxed on halal law than Shi’ite Muslims in that Sunnis will tolerate meats killed and cooked by Christian or Jewish slaughterhouse workers and cooks. Religious slaughter by Jews and Muslims does not permit animals to be stunned before having their throats cut which can be seen as barbaric and cruel by animal rights activists. Arthur Chappell
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12 responses
@wiLLmaH (8226)
• Singapore, Singapore
8 Nov 15
Halal certified restaurants cannot touch any non-Halal utensils too.
2 people like this
• Preston, England
8 Nov 15
yes that's true too - they can't just wash any knife and then use it on halal food - it has to be exclusive
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@wiLLmaH (8226)
• Singapore, Singapore
9 Nov 15
@arthurchappell here in Singapore, they have different washers for those food.
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• Preston, England
9 Nov 15
@wiLLmaH must mean a need for bigger kitchens to allow the separation
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@amnabas (9966)
• Karachi, Pakistan
8 Nov 15
Yes we muslim prefer halaal foods animals are slaughtered according to islamic guidelines.We dont eat pork it is not allowed in islam.
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@tallawah (8266)
• Kingston, Jamaica
9 Nov 15
Halal is almost as strict as Kosher. And in Jamaica, where it is cheaper to import Kosher...it is kosher.
@jerzgirl (7978)
• Gloucester City, New Jersey
9 Nov 15
I knew that they were similar because they follow Old Testament food laws for the most part and both groups descend from the groups represented in those books. I've seen people RANT over how Muslims kill their food animals and have no problem at all with Jewish methods - all because of who is doing it. My Muslim neighbors must be Sunni because they have accepted food from me that is not Halal. They share theirs with me frequently. I don't cook nearly as often as they do, though. LOL
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@Freelanzer (8290)
• Canada
8 Nov 15
I respect the custom because at least they give some thought to how the animals are slaughtered. As far as stunning an animal before slaughter, I know that is not a common practice anywhere in the world.
1 person likes this
• Canada
8 Nov 15
@arthurchappell I am not surprised you saw it used on a school visit but what happens behind the scenes?
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• Preston, England
8 Nov 15
@Freelanzer I saw the live throat cutting of a bull too, without stunning. It was very dangerous as the beast struggles and thrashes a great deal and the blood made the floor very slippery too. The slaughterhouse was quite smoothly run but I was told that sometimes the staff tease or torment animals to help escape the monotony. The animals look very scared as if aware of their fate. I was never nauseated. Only one lad with us was too queasy to finish the tour. I'm sure there is a lot we never saw too
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@RasmaSandra (16566)
• Riga, Latvia
8 Nov 15
@arthurchappell Very interesting. I love many Jewish foods so perhaps I would like these too. As long as the food is tasty.
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@GreatMartin (4306)
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
8 Nov 15
I have always been interested in why and how those 'laws' came about.
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• Preston, England
8 Nov 15
A lot of it is due to how hard it was to keep food from going off in a hot desert environment - pork is particularly bad for food poisoning and goes off quickly - edicts against its consumption made practical sense pre-refrigeration era - similar with other foods like roadkill - a religious slant was added and the strict food laws came into scripture
@tallawah (8266)
• Kingston, Jamaica
9 Nov 15
Leviticus
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• Canada
9 Nov 15
Why is Halal hamburger cheaper than non-Halal? It is in our grocery store anyway.
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• Preston, England
9 Nov 15
depends where they get their beef, and probably involves supermarket branding mark ups too - taste wise there will be little difference. I'd have the halal just because it is cheaper
• Australia
9 Nov 15
Thank you very much. Finally I have heard a proper explanation of what the term Halal constitutes. Excellent and (for me) a very informative post. Are separate kitchens required for the preparation of certain foods?
1 person likes this
• Preston, England
9 Nov 15
they may need separate kitchens if there are both Muslim and non Muslims to serve, but in a purely halal restaurant everything will need to be halal anyway so there would be no need for a second kitchen
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@tallawah (8266)
• Kingston, Jamaica
9 Nov 15
In Jamaica we have a few middle eastern restuarants; a Jordanian created three, sold one to two Syrians, one to an Egyptian...and I'm not sure where the other chap comes from. I know Billal who runs al-aldin. He imports Kosher meat from Florida as it is cheaper then to bring in Halal. Lots of people eat there, including most Jews. You can see them prepare the food also. You can watch if you want.
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@blitzfrick (2912)
• United States
9 Nov 15
I find much about Middle Eastern religions to be barbaric and cruel, and not just to animals. Sorry, but that's just my perspective. Also, I'm not fond of cultural relativism, where such practices are excused in the name of culture or religion. Bah.
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@Jessicalynnt (47791)
• Centralia, Missouri
8 Nov 15
We have a modified kosher, in that same days we keep kosher. But honestly we cannot afford a second kosher kitcher, and Im not willing to give up cheeseburgers, so.... yeah. interesting to try these new ways of eating for sure though
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@boiboing (12207)
• Northampton, England
8 Nov 15
I used to know a Jewish guy who was a certifeed inspector and consultant for both Kosher and Halal. I found it quite funny that he was working for both groups.
@tallawah (8266)
• Kingston, Jamaica
9 Nov 15
It is very much the same thing. You have to know that until this politics came in, the two groups got along very well. We get along very well in Jamaica. I guess it is a alteration of No peace beyond the Line to Peace beyond the line.
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@simone10 (21678)
• Louisville, Kentucky
8 Nov 15
I never heard of this before. Quite an interesting post. Something else I have learned about different cultures.