Tuesday, December 22, 2009


According to Islamic Religious Rules, all foods consumed by its members must conform to Halal standards which are universally respected. As many countries do not impose any restrictions if the products are certified as Halal by the industry, disputes have often arisen because of lack of credibility of its certifying arms. New Zealand, one of the top beef and dairy products exporters in the world had experienced serious problems regarding quality and has now brought the certifying organizations, New Zealand Islamic Meat Management (NZIMM) dealing with meat products and Federation of Islamic Association (FIA), managing dairy product exports under its direct overseeing control.

"The Government is stepping into an arena it has previously tried to stay clear of - the certification of New Zealand exports as "halal", or "clean" in terms of Islamic religious rules. New Zealand Food Safety Authority (NZFSA) has announced that organisations which certify halal meat for export will be subject to government oversight "to standardise halal certification and improve assurances to our trading partners". "While the proposed model focuses currently on meat exports, it could be extended to include dairy products in the future," said NZFSA market access director Tony Zohrab. NZFSA has added halal export certification for Indonesia, Malaysia and the Middle East to the list of additional assurances it provides to importing countries.Halal certification in New Zealand has not previously been directly regulated by government officials".

Probably the proposed ban by Indonesia on import of $ 100 million worth beef and $ 540 million worth dairy products from New Zealand in 2010, because of quality issues, must have spurred the action by the food safety authority in that country. More significantly New Zealand also has thrown open the field of certification to others for certification purpose, who must conform to the standards of performance stipulated.


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