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Halal

The term “Halal” is food that adheres to Islamic law, as defined in the Koran.

The criteria for Halal used by Central Maine Meats are as follows:

 

Slaughter Criteria

  • Transport of animals to the slaughterhouse and their unloading should be humane.
  • The animals must be of species lawful to consume in Islamic law (beef, veal, lamb, goat). And alive and healthy at the time of slaughter.
  • Slaughter must be performed by a Muslim (who is of sound mind, mature, and fully understands the Islamic procedure and conditions for slaughtering of animals).
  • Slaughtering tools and other implements used must be for the slaughter of halal animals only.
  • The knife must be long enough, razor sharp and without blemishes and damage.
  • The name of Allah must be declared at the time of slaughter by saying: “Bismillah Allahu Akbar” (In the Name of Allah; Allah is the Greatest).
  • The animal slaughtered shall face the Qiblah (direction of prayer for Muslims) while slaughtering the animal.
  • Slaughtering must be done once only; the slaughtering implement must not be lifted from the animal during slaughtering; any lifting is construed as one act of slaughter; multiple acts of slaughter on one animal are prohibited.
  • The animal is slaughtered in such a way that its life departs quickly and it is not left to suffer.
  • Bleeding must be spontaneous and complete; animals should not be shackled and hoisted before bleeding is completed.
  • Further preparation and dressing of the carcass must be delayed until all signs of life and cerebral reflex have disappeared.

Additional Stunning Criteria

The act of stunning is highly discouraged in Islamic law, however, the ruling regarding an animal that has been stunned is that the animal is lawful to consume provided that the animal was alive at the time of slaughter. The following requirements for stunning:

The operation and control of the stunning apparatus shall be performed by a trained individual.

Only non-lethal methods are accepted such as the head-only electrical stunning or captive bolt stunning. The animal should be alive at the time of slaughter and must be able to regain consciousness.

The inspector and slaughterers must monitor the animals after stunning to verify that the animals are stunned and alive before the point of slaughter.

The slaughterer must immediately slaughter the animal after the recital without any significant delay or doing anything else in between. At the time of slaughter, if the name of anyone else other than Allah is invoked (i.e. animal sacrificed for him/her), the meat becomes Haram or “unlawful”. If a Muslim forgets to invoke the name of Allah at the time of slaughter, the meat will remain Halal. However, if they intentionally do not invoke the name of Allah, the meat becomes Haram.

The animal must be slaughtered by the use of a sharp knife and must be done in one stroke without lifting the knife. The knife must not kill due to its weight. If it kills due to the impact the meat may not be permissible. The knife should be sterilized and thoroughly washed after every slaughter.

***The slaughtering should not be done on a production line where pigs are slaughtered. Any instrument used for slaughtering pigs should not be used in the Halal slaughtering since pork is considered unlawful in Islamic culture.***

Slaughterers must be authorized to remove animals that were not properly cut from the line. These carcasses must be processed separately and labeled as non-Halal. The Halal slaughtered carcasses should be stamped and labeled as “Halal”.

Contamination/cross contamination with any non-Halal carcasses, material(s), or products must be completely avoided throughout the slaughter process, storage, and packaging.