The Department of Islamic Development Malaysia must receive applications from foreign businesses seeking Halal accreditation in Malaysia. (JAKIM). The applicant’s premises will then be inspected on-site by JAKIM, who may also collect product samples for later testing in a facility.
To offer halal goods in Malaysia, companies must first obtain a Halal Certificate from the government. Customers can verify that a product complies with Malaysia’s kosher requirements by looking at the kosher Certificate.
Malaysia, which has a Muslim population of about 16 million, is the largest producer and consumer of kosher goods in Southeast Asia. Malaysia sends halal goods worth 35.4 billion ringgit ($7.46 billion), or 5.1% of its total exports, primarily to Indonesia and other nations with sizable Muslim populations.
Food items, cosmetics, and medications all use animal products, so halal approval is pertinent to these items as well. Here, we examine the definition of halal in Malaysia and the process by which companies can obtain a Halal Certificate.
What is Halal Certificate?
It is better to first grasp the concept or basis of halal so that we are clear on the prerequisites and conditions of halal certification before we delve into the subject of how to apply for a halal certificate.
The Arabic term for “permissible” or “lawful” is halal. The word itself refers to what Muslims are permitted to do in their daily lives, particularly in terms of what they can eat and consume. Haram, another Arabic word for something that is prohibited, is the opposite of Halal.
The Holy Quran establishes a distinction between halal and haram, and this distinction is mirrored in Sharia law, which controls the Muslim way of life.
What is Halal and Haram, like everything else in Muslim law, are derived from the Holy Quran, Sharia Laws, as well as Hadith, which are the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad.
Islamic dietary regulations, particularly those pertaining to meat, are most frequently associated with the word “halal.” Muslims must be certain about the origin, handling, and preparation of the meat they consume in order for it to be suitable for consumption. In addition, Islamic law is very explicit about what foods are Halal and what is Haram.
What is considered Halal food in Malaysia?
The most typical application of halal certification is in relation to food items. Sometimes businesses create alternative food items, like meat products, that are targeted specifically at Muslim consumers and ask for a Halal Certificate.
Trade Description Order (Usage of the Term “Halal”) 1975 contains Malaysia’s meaning of the word “Halal.” This meaning states that a dish is halal if it complies with the following standards:
- does not originate from, contain, or contain anything made from an animal that is prohibited to Muslims under Islamic law or an animal that has not been killed in accordance with Islamic law.
- does not include any elements that are prohibited by Islamic law.
- is not produced, processed, or prepared using tools or instruments that do not comply with Islamic law’s definition of purity.
- It does not come into touch with or is not kept close to any food that does not adhere to the rules or any items that are deemed impure by Islamic law while it is being prepared, processed, or stored.
What other products can be certified as Halal in Malaysia?
A Halal Certificate can be obtained for a wide range of goods and services in addition to food items. The majority of these are goods or services that could contain animal products on the grounds or as ingredients. These consist of:
Beverages, food supplements, restaurants, hotels, consumer goods, pharmaceuticals, logistics, slaughterhouses, original equipment makers, and medical devices are some examples of these categories.
For a product to be deemed Halal, there are specific requirements for each business or product category. The National Council for Malaysian Islamic Religious Affairs, for instance, addressed The Guidelines on the Production, Preparation, Handling, and Storage of Halal Food in 2000 in relation to slaughterhouses.
Who can issue a Halal certificate?
Before 2000, there were no halal-related regulations or rules, so anyone could issue a halal recognition certificate.
According to their own guidelines, JAKIM’s Halal Hub Division, the Halal State Religious Department, and even many private businesses certify food as halal. Standards, reviews, monitoring, and paperwork are not consistent. In the 1990s, a small number of well-known businesses generated millions of dollars each year by merely offering halal certificates without carrying out the necessary halal status checks.
This situation is extremely concerning because it not only targets business owners who have been duped by this private company but also confuses consumers who think the goods they have bought are halal when they are not being reviewed in accordance with halal regulations.
Since the introduction of the Malaysian halal certification manual in 2004 and the creation of the Trade Act 2011 (KPDNKK) in 2011, only JAKIM is authorized to give halal certification in Malaysia. This implies that there is only one halal emblem recognized and utilized for Malaysian goods.
There won’t be any private businesses offering halal certificates after that. Of course, there will be a small number of people who attempt to demonstrate their halal status without passing through a JAKIM verification procedure.
How to apply for a Halal Certificate in Malaysia?
The government organization in charge of regulating Halal Certificates in Malaysia is called the Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (Jabatan Kemajuan Islam Malaysia, or JAKIM).
Businesses can use the MYeHALAL method on the JAKIM Halal Hub to submit an online application for a Halal Confirmation Certificate. If they are successful, businesses may use the JAKIM-issued Halal logo on their goods.
A Halal Confirmation Certificate applicant must fit into one of six groups. Which are:
Manufacturer/Producer, Distributor/Trader, Subcontract Manufacturer, Repacking, Food Premises, and Abattoir/Slaughterhouse are some examples of these industries.
Applicants must tell JAKIM the following details after choosing their category:
- company biography; business registration; product and menu names and descriptions for certification; ingredients used
- manufacturer’s and component supplier’s names and addresses
- halal certification for ingredients, along with product specifications for crucial additives (if applicable)
- material type for packing; manufacturing techniques
- other papers, including (if any) HACCP, ISO, GHP, GMP, TQM, etc.; and a factory/premises location chart.
After that, JAKIM will check out the applicant’s property in person. During JAKIM’s examination of the property, the applicant must make a file for the Halal Certificate application in which to keep all pertinent paperwork. During the examination, the inspector may collect product samples for lab testing.
If approved, the applicant’s Halal Certification will be good for two years, with the exception of slaughterhouses, where it will only be good for one year. A Halal Certificate holder must submit an application for recertification at least three months before the certificate expires.