Top UK Supermarkets Secretly Sell Halal

From the Daily Mail (UK):
Britain's biggest supermarket chains are selling halal lamb and chicken without telling unsuspecting shoppers.

Those stocking meat slaughtered according to Islamic law include Waitrose, Marks & Spencer, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Somerfield and the Co-op.

And a Mail on Sunday investigation has found that fast-food chains including Domino’s Pizza, Pizza Hut, KFC, ­Nando’s and Subway are also using halal meat without ­telling customers.

But the UK’s second-biggest supermarket, Asda, has refused to confirm or deny whether it sells halal meat.

The Mail on Sunday contacted Asda on Tuesday, but by yesterday it had failed to answer any of our questions.

Initially, Waitrose, Sainsbury’s and Tesco were reluctant to admit they sold halal meat. But later they confessed to selling Islamically slaughtered lamb. Tesco also admitted selling some halal chicken without labelling it as such.

Most lamb imported from New Zealand by British supermarkets has been slaughtered according to Muslim law, but this is not mentioned on packaging. Some lamb from British abattoirs is also halal.

Last night, Agriculture Minister Jim Paice said: ‘People should know what they’re buying in the shops or when they’re eating out and I will be discussing with the food industry the role labelling can play in giving consumers a choice.’

The supermarkets and fast-food outlets said they did not feel the need to tell customers that meat is halal because the slaughter conformed to Western standards, with animals stunned before being killed.

But the RSPCA has raised concerns about the way chicken is killed in Islamic abattoirs because the birds are stunned with a weaker electric current, which does not guarantee unconsciousness during slaughter.

Our enquiries have found that ­Subway uses some Islamically slaughtered chicken that has not been stunned.

Our enquiries have found that ­Subway uses some Islamically slaughtered chicken that has not been stunned.

Non-Muslim religious leaders say that Christians, Hindus or Sikhs may find it offensive to eat meat slaughtered according to Islamic ritual. Jews are unlikely to be exposed to such meat because they eat kosher, or animals slaughtered according to Jewish law.

Last week The Mail on Sunday revealed how halal food was being served to unsuspecting people in hospitals, schools and pubs across the UK.

The country’s biggest hotel and restaurant group, Whitbread– which owns the Beefeater and Brewers Fayre chains – was also selling halal food, as were well-known sporting venues such as Ascot, Twicken­ham and Wembley.

Under Islamic law, an animal must be slaughtered by having its throat cut while it is conscious.

All its blood must drain out, otherwise Muslims regard it as impure. The person carrying out the killing has to recite an Arabic verse at the time.brings the practice in line with Western methods.

All Islamically slaughtered lamb and chicken sold in British supermarkets is stunned before being killed, but is not labelled as halal. Moderate Islamic groups allow animals to be stunned before slaughter, which brings the practice in line with Western methods.

Inayat Bunglawala, the chair of Muslims4UK, said: ‘Supermarkets should not be afraid of labelling their products as halal. Halal meat tastes just the same as non-halal meat.’

But Mike Judge, from the campaign group the Christian Institute, said: ‘The idea of having Islamic ritual said over meat would be objectionable to some Christians. I would find it objectionable, so it should be labelled as halal.’

Initially, Tesco and Waitrose were reluctant to admit they sold any halal meat....
Read it all here.

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