Indonesia Bans New Zealand Beef Over Halal Certification

June 4 (Bloomberg) — Indonesia, Asia’s third-most populous
country, has banned imports of beef from New Zealand, saying the
meat doesn’t conform to religious certification requirements.

Indonesia issued the ban after the country’s Council of
Ulemas, or MUI, said in March it doesn’t recognize any
certifying bodies in New Zealand that can give assurance the
meat is halal, or conforms to Islamic dietary law, Agriculture
Minister Anton Apriyantono said.

“Since May, 76 containers of beef from New Zealand have
arrived, and these need to be re-exported,” Apriyantono told a
press conference in Jakarta today. New Zealand is Indonesia’s
biggest overseas beef supplier. Indonesia will still permit
imports of New Zealand beef that was slaughtered before March 25,
the ministry said.

Indonesia on July 7 last year banned imports of New Zealand
beef over what it said was improper labeling. The ban was lifted
a week later after New Zealand’s promise to improve packaging.

“MUI has conducted a complete evaluation on halal
certifying bodies in New Zealand and it recognizes none,”
Tjeppy Soedjana, director general of livestock at the
Agriculture Ministry, said today.

Indonesia, which has the world’s largest Muslim population,
imports beef to supplement local output.

To contact the reporters on this story:
Naila Firdausi in Jakarta at;
Yoga Rusmana in Jakarta at