Minister in charge of Islamic Affairs Jamil Khir Baharom said today a food outlet without halal certification does not mean the outlet is haram.
He said it was just a perception that when an outlet did not have a halal certification, the food served was haram, he said at the Dewan Rakyat today.
The minister in the Prime Minister’s Department also clarified that halal certification for food outlets was done voluntarily by owners.
The certification, he said, helped patrons who are not familiar with non-local cuisine to erase any doubts they might have.
“There are some among the rural community, especially the old. When you mention root beer, the kampung people ask, ni bir ke rut ke (is it beer or a root)?”
He added it was not the ministry that declared any outlet non-halal.
“The only thing is if a restaurant has no halal certification, it creates doubts.”
Earlier, Ngeh Khoo Ham (DAP-Beruas) had said that there was a perception that food outlets without halal certificates should not be visited by Muslims.
Several weeks ago, Pretzel outlet Auntie Anne’s was reported to have been denied halal certification as one of their products was named “Pretzel Dog”.
Source : Minderjeet Kaur@FMT Reporters Online