Govt Sets New Standard For Halal Products

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 21 (Bernama) — The government
continues to take on a proactive approach to meet demands from Muslim
consumers by setting a new standard for halal (permissible in Islam)
products, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Dr
Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said today.

He said besides the Standard MS 1500:2004 for the production,
preparation, handling and storing of halal food which was being
reviewed, the government would also introduce a new standard for
cosmetic and personal care products.

“The Standard Cosmetic and Personal Care – General Guidelines is
in the process for gazetting by the science, technology and innovation

“The standard for halal cosmetic products is introduced on the
government’s awareness that Muslim consumers are concerned over the
presence of many cosmetic products in the market which do not have the
halal logo.

“By setting the standard, Muslim consumers will feel safe to use
the products,” he said in response to a question by Salahuddin Ayub
(PAS-Kubang Kerian) on standards for halal products in the Dewan Rakyat

Ahmad Zahid said halal standards for other products were also
being developed, especially for products made from animal skin, fur,
bones, nail, teeth and horns, logistic service and also chemical,
herbal and pharmaceutical products.

To a supplementary question by Salahuddin on meat produced from
cloning technology, Ahmad Zahid said the government was working with
the United States Food and Drugs Administration (USFDA), several food
manufacturers in China, governments of Asean member countries and
several laboratories in Europe for more information on the matter.

The Halal Development Corporation (HDC) laboratory in Cyberjaya
serves as the centre for scientific researches, especially in matters
concerning genetic engineering.

“We have a ‘syarak’ and ‘fatwa’ advisory committee which sits with the scientists to look into the matter,” he added.

Meanwhile, in a press conference at the Parliament Lobby, Ahmad
Zahid said since officers from the Halal Unit of the Islamic
Development Department were absorbed into HDC, 525 halal certificates
had been issued since June this year, with 10 of the certificates
issued for products produced by international companies.