Malaysia: Pig DNA found in popular Halal meat product

The Malaysian Islamic Development Department (JAKIM) has found traces of pig DNA in meat products supplied by Lucky Food Processing resulting in the revocation of its Halal certification with immediate effect.

In a statement released in its website, JAKIM stated that “the Halal Malaysia Verification Meeting Panel Bil 12/2011 held on April 22, 2011 has decided that the Malaysian Halal Certificate for Lucky Food Processing Sdn Bhd bearing the serial number 010949-010966, has been revoked with immediate effect following the discovery of pig Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA) in its products.”

“As such, all existing holders or new applicants for Malaysian Halal Certificate using products manufactured by Lucky Food Processing Sdn Bhd are required to:

1. change the products to use other products with recognised Halal certificates;

2. present the purchase receipt of the new products;

3. undergo a samak process; and

Samak is a ritual cleansing process in which clay soil and water is mixed and used for cleaning tainted parts or equipments to purify from known Haram elements.

When contacted, the company was adamant that they have been following all of JAKIM’s required procedures and the ban came as a total surprise.

“We have nothing to comment except the fact that we have been following exactly the procedures set out by JAKIM and the state religious authorities,” said Maria Sariza, the company’s Halal Executive who has been in charged of Halal compliance matters for Lucky Food since 2005.

“We have never produced any porcine-based products in any of our production lines, so as you can imagine, the discovery of pig-based DNA in our product came as a real surprise for us here,” she said.

“All that we can do right now is to undertake the suggested amendments and hope that this does not escalate into a scenario worse than it already is,” she added.

Established in 1982, Penang-based Lucky Food’s main focus is in supplying a wide range of imported chilled and frozen products such as beef, lamb, poultry, venison, seafood, frozen vegetables, chilled and frozen dairies, condiments and confectionery ingredients.

The statement did not specifically state which product that was tainted but according to JAKIM’s Halal directory listing, Lucky Food has over 120 Halal certified products registered with the sole Malaysian Halal certifier.

Halal Media