Somerset Couple Launch First Organic Halal Meat Business for Muslims

moved to the countryside in order to escape the hustle and bustle of
London and to start a greener lifestyle, English Muslims Neil and Nikki
Payne wanted to address their meat consumption. Unhappy with the
quality of meat available in butchers and at the supermarkets, they had
practically become vegetarian. There was always a suspicion that the
much of the meat branded as “halal” (meaning slaughtered in accordance
with Islamic principles) may not be truly halal. Having become
smallholders virtually overnight in a small village in Somerset they
started to buy and slaughter animals themselves to guarantee a
compassionate ending and truly halal meat. Through conversations with
breeders, abattoir owners and locals they soon discovered some
uncomfortable truths about the halal meat industry which has resulted
in them launching the UK’s first organic halal meat company.

taking the plunge in their early thirties to split from the capital,
starting an organic halal meat business was the last thing on the minds
of Neil and Nikki. However after witnessing first hand the lack of
standards, ethics and principles in much of the halal meat industry
they decided to address the problem. They took the plunge and invested
their life savings in starting up Abraham Natural Produce, a company
providing organic, ethically reared and halal meat. Although targeting
the UK Muslim population the couple believe the idea has a wider
appeal, especially to those interested in local, natural, good quality
produce. One of the unique selling points for Abraham Natural Produce
is that Neil went to the lengths of becoming a licensed slaughter man
and now slaughters each and every animal himself, guaranteeing that all
their meat is 100% genuine halal.

“We decided to set up the
company as a service for people who think like us. Our target market is
people who really care about the quality of the animals, their
treatment, what they are fed on and how they are slaughtered. We are
the on 00004000 ly company that can tell a customer when and where
their lamb was born, what breed it was, where it lived, what it ate,
what air it breathed and who slaughtered it. Show me a halal butcher
that can do that. In addition we also promote eco-friendly values,
support local providers and donate a percentage of profits to charities
that help feed the poor and underprivileged. Our business model is not
profit driven but conscience driven,” states Neil Payne.

launch comes at a time when the public are showing more and more
interest in organic and naturally-reared produce. Statistics show that
in the period from 2005-2006, sales of organic produce grew an
astonishing 30%. Abraham Natural Produce now addresses this issue for
the UK Muslim population. On top of this the ethos of the company sits
well with many voices that would like to see an end to the domination
of the supermarkets in favour of local foods.

“You are what
you eat,” adds Neil, “so when you are eating flesh, something else’s
DNA, you need to be 100% positive that the animal was pure, healthy and
above all happy.”

For more information on Abraham Natural
Produce, based in Somerset (UK) please visit their site at or call 01460 240411.

Author Information

Neil Payne

Abraham Natural Produce Ltd