Halal Meat

Religion Oct 31, 2021

If you're not Muslim or familiar with Muslim culture, you may not know what it means to see this label on some food at the store. What I understand it to mean is that the meat being sold is from an animal that was killed by a believing Muslim butcher who said, "In the name of God," before slaughtering the animal.

Also, the product shouldn't contain anything that's haram (unlawful) to eat, like pork products.

There is now a large enough international demand by Muslims for halal meat that halal beef from New Zealand can be found for sale at Meijer, a grocery store in Ohio.

There is a lot of information and marketing on the package...green energy, high protein, non-GMO (it damn well better be). But read the fine print on the front and the back and there's no extra info about it being halal.

Well, maybe that's fair enough. I bought this mozzarella cheese at Aldi because it is Kosher dairy. There's no explanation about Jewish law on the cheese package.

From my understanding, something with a K and a D on it should be certified as being Kosher dairy with no mixed in meat. Muslims don't have to worry about mixing dairy and meat, but if something is Kosher, it should be free of pork products.

So Muslims benefit from Jewish as well as Muslim grocery store symbols.

But what about people who wouldn't want to eat meat killed in the name of God? Well, they should avoid anything with a halal marking on it.

Some Muslims in America wouldn't want to eat any meat that doesn't have a halal stamp on the package. Other Muslims feel comfortable eating meat from People of the Book. Some eat Kosher meat, but not any other meat from the grocery store. There is some religious meaning to meat being Kosher, whereas Christian meat doesn't have any sort of stamp.

There are other questions to what makes meat halal. These are the ones that really matter, but aren't so easily stamped on a package. Was the animal raised in a good way? Was it slaughtered humanely? Was the knife sharpened well?

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Joseph Shamis

Joseph Shamis is a recovering academic.

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