USA: Local McDonald’s stops serving halal meat

DEARBORN — Just one month after the McDonald’s Corporation and the Finley Management Company settled a non-halal class action lawsuit for $700,000, the owners of the Dearborn McDonald’s, located at 13158 Ford Road, have decided to no longer include halal items on their menu.
The Ford Road McDonald’s isn’t the only location to pull halal items from its menu. The McDonald’s, located at 14860 Michigan Avenue in Dearborn, has also stopped serving halal items, even though that location was not listed as a defendant in the lawsuit that was filed by the Dearborn law firm, Jaafar & Mahdi Law Group, P.C.
Both locations had served halal McChicken® and halal McNuggets® to their Muslim customers since 2005.  Over the years, some confusion has existed over what items were halal, and whether, or not customers had to request the halal meat. In addition, multiple reports have surfaced of several employees, at both locations, who didn’t seem properly trained in the handling of halal meat.
On September 2, 2011, Ahmed Ahmed, a Dearborn Heights resident, purchased a McChicken® sandwich from the Ford Road McDonald’s and discovered that the sandwich was not halal. Ahmed and his attorneys have not disclosed how this discovery was made. In the lawsuit, he alleged that, on numerous occasions, the Ford Road location had sold non-halal McChicken® and McNuggets®, while presenting the items as halal to their customers.
The Ford Road McDonald’s would not comment on why they have pulled their halal items. However, the Michigan Avenue McDonald’s did tell The Arab American News that they were “just trying to simplify the menu.”
Muslim customers can still take advantage of the Dearborn locations with a special “buy one, get one free” offer on their Filet-O-Fish sandwiches. According to managers at both locations, there is no limit on the amount of fish that you can purchase with any order.  They will match a free sandwich for each one purchased. This offer is only available for a limited time.
The Arab American News was able to contact McDonald’s Corp. for a statement about the two Dearborn locations pulling their halal products.
“McDonald’s is a system comprised of independent small business owners, who look to connect with and serve their local communities.There were two restaurants in Dearborn Michigan that served two Halal menu items for the past several years, and those items have now been discontinued, as a result of our continued efforts to focus on our national core menu. Our franchisees continue to be proud supporters of the Dearborn community,” McDonald’s Corp. told The Arab American News.