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General Chat - anything Goes > Halal in UK supermarkets

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message 1: by Simon (Highwayman) (last edited May 08, 2014 05:38AM) (new)

Simon (Highwayman) (highwayman) | 4698 comments What do you think about the latest bit of excitement over Halal food?

It seems that we are eating a lot of food slaughtered to Halal methods.

For me there are two issues :

1. We rationalise our meat eating by expecting the slaughter of animals to be carried out in an ethical manner. So is Halal really cruel? If so why do we allow it to continue.

2. I am personally not particularly religious but if I was I think I would be equally horrified that my food receives a muslem blessing when it is slaughtered (unless of course I was Moslem).

Its quite a puzzle.

Ban all Halal?
Make all food Halal?
Do nothing?

I must say I enjoy watching supermarket chains squirm but do we want to destroy the New Zealand lamb export market?

Is it time to say "enough is enough" when it comes to 'tolerance' of others peoples beliefs.

What do you think?


message 2: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments I think whatever the method of slaughter, the animal should be stunned. This is the case in much but by no means all Halal meat. I would like it to be labelled.


message 3: by S. (new)

S. Aksah | 152 comments Oh dear! I would only expect Muslim to eat Halal meat. Are they all over the supermarket now? I remember the last time I was in the UK I have to do with lots of fish and chips! Jolly good they were! Unlike the US southern fish and chips though. Don't try those! Not very nice!


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments I'm just grateful to be able to get meat.


message 5: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments It seems that most of the NZ lamb is Halal but 88% of that was slaughtered with pre-stunning. I would like to ensure I wasn't buying any of the 12%.


message 6: by Marc (last edited May 08, 2014 05:56AM) (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments Kosher slaughter methods are very similar to Halal. The same should apply to them whatever is decided. So for the media or government to single out Halal smacks of scapegoating or profiling to me.


message 7: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments The issue is whether Kosher is labelled too. It's the fact that people don't know which is causing the problem.


message 8: by Marc (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments Kath wrote: "The issue is whether Kosher is labelled too. It's the fact that people don't know which is causing the problem."

Kosher meat has to be labelled. I suppose like the horsemeat debacle some meat could be going through kosher slaughterhouse methods, but since kosher meat is more expensive than non-kosher meat because of the production cost premiums, that seems unlikely.


message 9: by Marc (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments I'm unclear as to how a verbal blessing can impact one's culinary pleasure?


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments Actually kosher slaughter forbids stunning before slaughter. Most halal animals are stunned before being slaughtered.


message 11: by Marc (last edited May 08, 2014 06:09AM) (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments Patti (baconater) wrote: "Actually kosher slaughter forbids stunning before slaughter. Most halal animals are stunned before being slaughtered."

which makes Kosher worse in terms of animal welfare no?


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments Depends on whether you reckon stunning an animal before slitting its neck to be more humane.

Personally, I've seen animals having their throats slit on the side of the road and I've also worked in a slaughterhouse where the poultry was stunned and the pigs were bolted.

The animals on the side of the road are definitely less distressed.


message 13: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments Marc wrote: "Kath wrote: "The issue is whether Kosher is labelled too. It's the fact that people don't know which is causing the problem."

Kosher meat has to be labelled. I suppose like the horsemeat debacle ..."


That's what I meant, Marc. Kosher is, Hallal apparently isn't. If they both were, then scapegoating wouldn't come into it.


message 14: by Bookworm (new)

Bookworm | 3 comments Ok this has been discussed a lot on my local radio, but I think you should force everyone to eat this meat.
Pizza Hut will only provide this meat.
So it leaves us with no choice.


message 15: by Marc (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments Kath wrote: "Marc wrote: "Kath wrote: "The issue is whether Kosher is labelled too. It's the fact that people don't know which is causing the problem."

Kosher meat has to be labelled. I suppose like the horse..."


ah got ya!


message 16: by Marc (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments Patti (baconater) wrote: "Depends on whether you reckon stunning an animal before slitting its neck to be more humane.

Personally, I've seen animals having their throats slit on the side of the road and I've also worked in..."


I think slitting the throat is the issue. Stunning beforehand is seondary


message 17: by Jud (new)

Jud (judibud) | 18540 comments Having worked in a fish factory that was deemed 'kosher' (or halal, I can't remember which) I can honestly say that a proportion of food that is labelled as halal/kosher probably isn't. From the way our manager got on the day the Rabbai arrived I'm 99% confident the salmon we sold should not have been given the OK.

As to the meat being given a muslim blessing, as a non-muslim it makes no difference to me, the butcher might as well be cursing his mother-in-law for all I care.

So long as the animal dies quickly (stunned or not) I consider that humane, it's hard to kill a truck load of pig or sheep without them getting stressed, at the side of the road they won't have been as stressed as it isn't such a big change of scene. I've never really thought about it before or how meat ends up on my plate.


message 18: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Lawston (andrewlawston) | 1791 comments It's all a massive waste of time being stirred up by racists, who are throwing in the animal rights element in a very cynical move to try and give their bigoted tosh some sort of intellectual credence.

But then I quite liked the taste of horsemeat last year, so what do I know?


message 19: by Marc (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments Scapegoat is of course neither Kosher nor Halal...


message 20: by Jim (new)

Jim | 21943 comments I suppose I'm too close to the industry, but this is hardly new. New Zealand is a major exporter and long ago came to the decision that it wasn't economic to run separate Halal plants and non-Halal plants. (They sell a lot of lamb to Moslem countries, they couldn't survive without the halal trade) So they informally made the decision to basically shift over to halal slaughter. From memory this was done more than twenty years ago.


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments Jim wrote: "I suppose I'm too close to the industry, but this is hardly new. New Zealand is a major exporter and long ago came to the decision that it wasn't economic to run separate Halal plants and non-Hala..."

Makes sense to me.


message 22: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments Marc wrote: "Scapegoat is of course neither Kosher nor Halal..."

...because it escaped?


message 23: by Tim (new)

Tim | 9478 comments Absolutely nothing wrong with horse meat - it's quite tasty in fact. The only problem as far as I was concerned was that it got labelled as beef.

The Halal thing is a complete non-issue. Why should I care if someone wants to say some words over the animal - does it make any difference to the pig/sheep/chicken/cow/horse?

At the end of the day, we have to eat meat. There are simply too many people in the world, and too little suitable agricultural land for everyone to become vegetarian , so unless we come up with ways of substantially reducing the global population (preferably not through WWIII or nut job genocide), we will always need to kill animals and eat them.


message 24: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments Can I have mine pre-stunned, please? Labelling!


message 25: by Jud (new)

Jud (judibud) | 18540 comments I thought the problem with the horse meat was that it wasn't food grade meat and was from horses that had been ill and was full of horse drugs and then it was labeled as beef.

I'm pretty sure I ate horse once but I was only 12 on a French exchange and was too scared to ask. It was like beef but a lot more 'crumbly' was super tasty though.


message 26: by Tim (new)

Tim | 9478 comments If it wasn't food-grade meat... I obviously missed that bit (what comes from getting the news 3rd hand!)


message 27: by David (new)

David Hadley | 4873 comments I don't think I'd bother to worship a god that was too finicky about food.


Simon (Highwayman) (highwayman) | 4698 comments As I understand it, Halal was bought in by Mohamed primarily as a response to terrible food hygiene which was rendering his army incapacitated. The ban on Pork was likewise motivated and he only banned alcohol because his army was drunk all the time. Basically alcohol and bad meat was incompatible with a hot climate which was affecting his ability to wage war.


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments I believe all religious food rules were due to poor hygiene and storage abilities.


message 30: by David (new)

David Hadley | 4873 comments Simon (Highwayman) wrote: "As I understand it, Halal was bought in by Mohamed primarily as a response to terrible food hygiene which was rendering his army incapacitated. The ban on Pork was likewise motivated and he only ba..."

I read somewhere - maybe Dawkins - that the ban on pork had something to do with trying to stop human sacrifice, being as humans and pork taste much the same.


message 31: by Simon (Highwayman) (last edited May 08, 2014 08:06AM) (new)

Simon (Highwayman) (highwayman) | 4698 comments David wrote: "I read somewhere - maybe Dawkins - that the ban on pork had something to do with trying to stop human sacrifice, being as humans and pork taste much the same.
.."


That is an interesting slant but if they banned pork wouldn't that increase the human sacrifice?


message 32: by S. (new)

S. Aksah | 152 comments Oh dear!


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments Mmmmmmmpeoplebaconmmmmmmm


Lynne (Tigger's Mum) | 5862 comments Isn't it great when a custom becomes religious dogma and we all have to submit to it. You should hear Brigitte Bardot on the subject - she gets taken to court on a regular basis. I don't even like live animals having to travel long distances to abattoirs. All animals should be killed as humanely as possible.


message 35: by David (new)

David Hadley | 4873 comments Simon (Highwayman) wrote: "That is an interesting slant but if they banned pork wouldn't that increase the human sacrifice? "

It was Christopher Hitchens, not Dawkins God is Not Great How Religion Poisons Everything by Christopher Hitchens . I can't remember what his argument was - maybe making people lose the taste for human/pig by outlawing it or something like that.


message 36: by Marc (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments Simon (Highwayman) wrote: "As I understand it, Halal was bought in by Mohamed primarily as a response to terrible food hygiene which was rendering his army incapacitated. The ban on Pork was likewise motivated and he only banned alcohol because his army was drunk all the time. Basically alcohol and bad meat was incompatible with a hot climate which was affecting his ability to wage war.
..."


Phew, UK only saved by our climate then


message 37: by Marc (last edited May 08, 2014 08:40AM) (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments Patti (baconater) wrote: "I believe all religious food rules were due to poor hygiene and storage abilities."

if you read "Purity And Danger" it was more symbolic than just practical food hygiene. There was a superstition around animals which crossed over taxonomies, that is couldn't be clearly grouped, so they were felt to be dirty/taboo and to be avoided at all costs. Thus pigs with their trotters do not fit into the cloven hooved ruminants. Things that cut across classifications threaten to bring down whole bodies of knowledge and certainty.

Purity and Danger An Analysis of Concepts of Pollution and Taboo by Mary Douglas
Purity and Danger: An Analysis of Concepts of Pollution and Taboo


Simon (Highwayman) (highwayman) | 4698 comments I read a book about the life of Mohamed many years ago which is where I go my info, but I suppose all things depend on the point of view of the author.


message 39: by David (last edited May 08, 2014 08:47AM) (new)

David Hadley | 4873 comments Simon (Highwayman) wrote: "I read a book about the life of Mohamed many years ago which is where I go my info, but I suppose all things depend on the point of view of the author."

It's probably a combination of several factors.

The Hitchens thing is here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/God_Is_N...


message 40: by Jim (new)

Jim | 21943 comments Lynne (Tigger's Mum) wrote: "Isn't it great when a custom becomes religious dogma and we all have to submit to it. You should hear Brigitte Bardot on the subject - she gets taken to court on a regular basis. I don't even like..."

Interestingly it's never been Christian Dogma, the exact opposite in fact. I eventually found this. 1 Timothy 4
Such people teach that it is wrong to marry and to eat certain foods. But God created those foods to be eaten, after a prayer of thanks, by those who are believers and have come to know the truth. 4 Everything that God has created is good; nothing is to be rejected, but everything is to be received with a prayer of thanks, 5 because the word of God and the prayer make it acceptable to God.

But like Lynne, I think they should be killed as humanely as possibly


message 41: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments It amazes me how many people know what God wants. He never seems to tell them all the same thing though.


message 42: by Bookworm (new)

Bookworm | 3 comments Kath I agree with you. In India,in Punjab chickens are kept alive, and only when you have chosen your live chicken it is slaughtered in front of you. This is due to refrigeration, and the heat, and lack of electricity.


message 43: by David (new)

David Hadley | 4873 comments Kath wrote: "It amazes me how many people know what God wants. He never seems to tell them all the same thing though."

Divide & rule?


message 44: by Tim (new)

Tim | 9478 comments Jim wrote: "Interestingly it's never been Christian Dogma, the exact opposite in fact. I eventually found this. 1 Timothy 4
Such people teach that it is wrong to marry and to eat certain foods. But God created those foods to be eaten, after a prayer of thanks, by those who are believers and have come to know the truth. 4 Everything that God has created is good; nothing is to be rejected, but everything is to be received with a prayer of thanks, 5 because the word of God and the prayer make it acceptable to God.
"

Nothing there about not eating people... ;)


message 45: by Jim (new)

Jim | 21943 comments The loving your neighbour bit probably doesn't come with recipes :-)


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments Maple cured smoked neighbour. *drools*


message 47: by David (new)

David Hadley | 4873 comments Jim wrote: "Interestingly it's never been Christian Dogma, the exact opposite in fact."

Until now:

http://www.thedailymash.co.uk/news/so...


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments Love it! Stole it for Facebook!


message 49: by Michael Cargill (new)

Michael Cargill Cargill (michaelcargill) | 2998 comments Couldn't give a monkey's cuss if the meat I eat is Halal or not.


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments Monkey's cuss?

Oh bananas!


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