Cairo: Qatar has launched a guide on halal food that health authorities described as an “important milestone in food control”.
The guide was issued by the Ministry of Public Health to regulate importing halal food and Islamic bodies authorised to issue halal product and halal slaughtering certificates.
“Its importance lies in clarifying requirements of halal, and verifying validity, accuracy and credibility of halal certificates attesting that the meat, meat products, or foods containing meat are of animal origin that have been supervised by one of the issuers of halal certificates licensed by the State of Qatar,” the ministry said.
Published in Arabic and English, the guide provides general definitions and requirements of halal food, animal slaughtering, related certification forms approved in Qatar, as well as a list of prohibited foods according to the Islamic Sharia law and halal-related standards.
The guide also features application forms for authorising Islamic bodies to issue halal food and slaughtering certificates for exporting food to the Gulf country.
Halal slaughtering certificate are issued for all types of non-processed meat, while halal certificates are issued for any food products containing meat, fats or any ingredients of animal origin such as gluten, as well as food products carrying halal label, the ministry explained.
“The guidelines aim at raising awareness about requirements to ensure imported food compliance and avoid its rejection at the port of entry for non-compliance reasons,” the ministry said.
The ministry’s Department of Food Safety and Environmental Health has invited importers, as partners in food safety assurance, to register their food products in the registration system on the ministry’s website, to use data later in a new electronic food control system.