A Guide to Understanding Halal Food Packaging Requirements
The food packaging industry can be quite a competitive one. In 2020 alone, the industry generated over $301 billion in revenue. If your company packages food, you know there are a lot of regulations to consider if you want to be a reputable brand.
In particular, perhaps you're wondering about Halal food packaging requirements. You've yet to put a Halal product on the market, but you're ready to do so. If that's the case, you need to become more familiar with the ins and outs of Halal guidelines.
Detailed below, then, is your complete guide for Halal packaging expectations. Follow these instructions to ensure you're offering certified and permissible food options to your Muslim consumer base.
What Is a Halal Product?
At its core, Halal means "permissible" in the Arabic language. When it comes to food packaging, this term is used to suggest something is permissible according to Islamic law.
With billions of Muslims across the globe Halal food packaging is worth knowing about. This is especially true due to the large population in the United States alone.
It's important to be culturally aware and compliant if you want to maintain a Muslim consumer base. Being conscious of Halal requirements, then, will ensure you're meeting their religious standards.
Before we can understand Halal food packaging standards, we must first know about the food requirements themselves. It's true that the guidelines can seem complex at first. Remember, though, it's worthwhile to be conscious of the Islamic religion and values.
Here are some of the items on the list of unallowed foods according to Islamic law. They include alcohol, pork, birds of prey, foods that contain blood, and more.
Not only are there certain foods that Islamic law forbids eating, though. There are also specifications about how meat and other foods should be prepared. Keep reading to see how you can ensure your food preparation and packaging is compliant with Halal standards.
Food Preparation Is Important When Following Halal Guidelines
The first thing to note is that any game or wildlife must be treated humanely throughout its life. This is one of the most important things to consider for Halal food preparation from the get-go. This goes hand-in-hand with the core Islamic value of respecting and revering life itself.
When it's time to kill the chosen animal, specific steps must be taken. The rules for Halal-based slaughtering are called Dhabihah.
The butcher or slaughterer, upon the act itself, must first call upon the name of Allah (the Islamic god). After this prayer, every animal is killed by way of a knife slicing through the throat. It's important that the cut is clean and thorough without damaging the spinal cord.
As is similar to the separation of vegan and non-vegan food preparation, it's essential that the slaughtering is not contaminated with non-Halal animals in the same area. That's why it might be smarter for the slaughterer to perform the Halal slaughtering all the way through in a completely separate area.
What Goes Into an Official Halal Certification
If this process sounds overwhelming for a food processor, that's okay. There are third-party advisory organizations to help. They oversee the Halal rituals performed according to their religious standards.
Halal certification groups can ensure that the entire food processing production is compliant. This includes monitoring the live animals and checking on the final, packaged product. Halal certification comes with a recognizable seal of approval on that final packaging.
They will first evaluate a company to see if the slaughtering and packaging location has the potential for Halal certification. Then, they'll go oversee the process in action. This onsite evaluation will double-check to make sure Halal slaughtering won't be cross-contaminated with other products.
Because Halal food processing from start to finish is so intricate, it can be a challenge. Some food processors won't even attempt it. If it's something your company can offer, though, it will set you way ahead in the eyes of your Muslim consumer base.
That's why it's critical to have one of these qualified third-party certification groups on hand. The Halal food standard goes deep within Islamic cultural values. Don't skimp on ensuring the quality of the food preparation and packaging is according to their expectations.
Stay Organized for Halal Packaging and Labeling
As mentioned above, cross-contaminating Halal food with non-Halal food can present challenges. If the facility isn't entirely Halal-based, organization standards will be critical.
As soon as the meat is cut from the Halal-slaughtered animal, label it. Label it clearly, and keep it separated from non-Halal food. This will make packaging later on much easier.
Then, the Halal foods should even be stored separately from the non-Halal. It can be wise to think about multiple freezers or refrigerators at the processing facility for this reason.
Other Things to Know About Halal Packaging
Just like Halal foods cannot be contaminated, neither can the packaging materials. It's essential that they're sourced from toxin-free materials.
This is even true when manufacturing metal cans, for instance. Any oils used in that process need to be Halal-specific oils.
Food processors also need to work with their Halal certifying organization. The finished label design must include a few key things. This includes the list of ingredients, the source of food, the Halal certification organization, and the date of production.
Once you have the written approval from a Halal certifying organization, congratulations. If you can get this stamp of certification, you are official. The food items are complaint according to Islamic law.
If you need help designing your branding or marketing for your Halal packaging, don't worry. There are experts available to ensure you're targeting your consumer audience's core values.
Your Muslim consumer base is going to appreciate the extra steps you took to ensure the quality of Halal food processing. When you add your branding to the final packaging design, they'll be sure to remember you in the future.
Optimize Your Halal Food Packaging Options Today
If you're ready to launch a Halal product for your Muslim consumer audience, make sure the packaging is up to code. Halal food packaging requirements are detailed, but worth respecting if you want to build a reputable brand within that consumer base.
For that reason, we encourage you to reach out to our food packaging experts. We know how to incorporate Halal certification on your packaging to ensure your food products are compliant and marketable.
Work with us to ensure your brand follows the appropriate Halal packaging specifications. To start, check out more details about how our packaging design services have benefited brands in the past.