The event—titled OIC Stakeholders Forum on Unified Halal Food Standards and Procedures—is being held to provide stakeholders in the domain of halal standards, accreditation and certification and various OIC institutions an opportunity to work together, suggest widely-acceptable standards of halal, reconcile practices and variations within Member States, increase intra-OIC trade and promote capacity building.
Iyad Ameen Madani, Secretary General of the OIC, welcomed participants and stressed that halal is a major global industry that is not confined to food but also other products such as pharmaceuticals and cosmetics.
The final day of the forum will result in a series of recommendations that will be submitted to the Council of Foreign Ministers next year.
H.E. Minior Rahman, Bangladesh’s Minister for Religious Affairs, also spoke at the opening in which he said that the demand for halal is on the increase and that this is an opportunity for Muslim countries to develop unified standards and procedures.
Attendees include national standardization, accreditation and certification institutions of OIC Member States, OIC institutions, private sector establishments dealing with halal development, regional institutions and eminent personalities and experts in the domain of halal food standards, accreditation and certification.
The global halal market is estimated at US $2.3 trillion, amounting to US $1.4 trillion, consisting of food and beverages. Pharmaceutical products make up 22 percent or US $506 billion while cosmetics and personal care is estimated at US $230 billion.