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Sunday, February 24, 2008

Halal Showcase

Over 500 Companies Expected At Halal Showcase

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 24 (Bernama) -- More than 500 Muslim and non-Muslim companies are expected to take part in the Malaysia International Halal Showcase (MIHAS) 2008 to be held here from May 7 to 11.

Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (Matrade)'s chief executive officer Datuk Noharuddin Nordin said today that 235 local companies and seven foreign companies from Australia, Brunei, USA, Iran, India, Kazakhstan and Turkey have confirmed their participation.

"We expect 350 local and 150 companies from 30 countries to join this year's showcase," Noharuddin added.

Last year's MIHAS attracted 330 local and 96 foreign companies with total sales of RM683.2 million, he said during a media briefing here today.

This year, sales is expected to be even higher in view of the new sectors joining in the event such as food processing and packaging machinery companies.

Other participating companies include those from food manufacturing, cosmetics and healthcare, pharmaceuticals and herbal products as well as Islamic banking and takaful products.

More people today understand that the halal concept is not limited to food but many other aspects such as manufacturing and packaging, he said.

"It is hoped that this additional sector will attract exhibitors and traders interested in the acquisition of food processing machinery including devices, utensils, storage, displays, serving equipment and packaging materials certified suitable for the manufacturing of halal food," said Noharuddin.

He said the event will be also a good avenue for buyers and sellers in the halal market to establish new business alliances in trade and business. He said there will be 300 buyers from more than 30 countries at the event.

He said halal products and services were also gaining acceptance among non-Muslims and that the global market value for halal consumable and non-consumables products was estimated to touch RM2.1 trillion annually.

Current global market value for Islamic financing, takaful and other services is also on the rise and it is estimated to touch US$1 trillion.

MIHAS 2008 is expected to attract 40,000 visitors.


Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Global Halal Standards

Abu dhabi turns spotlight on need for global halal standards

Major players from the US$2.1 trillion a year Halal industry assemble in Abu Dhabi tomorrow (Sunday) for an event which can assist moves to establish global standards covering all Halal products.

Taking place at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre over the next three days, Halal World Expo is providing a platform for debate over a range of key issues which will shape the future of the burgeoning Halal industry.

It is often taken for granted that processed food and products available in supermarkets of Islamic countries like the UAE are fully Halal compliant, unless stated as being for ‘non Muslim’ consumption or use.

While there are currently systems in place to protect the consumer in the UAE, the fast growth pattern that is currently being experienced in the Halal consumer market means there is a growing demand for globalised standards across all Halal products.
The issue will be high on the agenda of Halal World Expo as government agencies from countries such as Malaysia and Brunei, which have already formed regulatory bodies to verify Halal products for consumers, come face to face in Abu Dhabi with Middle East and overseas producers.

Leading brand names such as Nestle, and Tahira foods, are taking their place in an international exhibitor line-up which includes producers from the UK, the USA, Pakistan, Croatia and Germany, as well as the Gulf region.
“The industry needs more progressive events like this to raise awareness of Halal products,” said Brian D’Cruz, Operations Manager of Khazan, one of the Gulf’s leading producers of Halal meat products, who believes Halal World Expo has arrived at the right time.

“We need shows like this to bring the industry together to seek the most effective ways of developing it for the benefit of the growing worldwide Muslim population.”
“The growth of the global Muslim community and the spread of Muslims across the US, Europe and so many other parts of the world means there is a huge demand for Halal products, and with this comes the need for global standardization.”
Added D’Cruz: “This is not easy, and it’s not going to happen in one step. We have to look at branding and packaging, establish the right price frame. And we need to build awareness and educate people that Halal food products are not just for Muslims.”

D’Cruz said Khazan, the Kuwaiti-owned company which opened its second meat factory in Sharjah earlier this year, will be using Halal World Expo to meet trade visitors from Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa with a view to opening new markets there with the help of distributors.

Among the official delegations exhibiting at the show are Brunei’s Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources, the Malaysian Ministry of Entrepreneur and Cooperative Development, the Croatian Chamber of Economy, the South African Chamber of Commerce, the Indonesian Ministry of Industry and the Bosnian Agency for Halal Quality Certification.

As the Middle East positions itself as one of the premier users of quality Halal products with its dense concentration of Muslim consumers, there is huge potential for the Halal industry to produce and distribute high quality, regulation certified Halal products throughout the region and the world.

Halal World Expo is providing the gateway into this relatively untapped market. The event is also focusing attention on Shari ah compliant lifestyle products including Islamic fashion, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals, recognising the growing demand in the UAE towards these products.

Additionally it is highlighting Islamic finance, a sector currently worth between US$200 and $500 billion annually which is a consistently growing interest for financial markets across the world. As the UAE positions itself as an international finance hub, the event is particularly timely to bring business leaders in the Islamic finance industry together.

Running alongside the exhibition, the Global Halal and Islamic Business Forum will enable business professionals from finance and banking, food and beverage, textile, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, property, travel, leisure and healthcare to discover the best practice in Halal and Islamic business.

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