The Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (JAKIM) is seeking public comments on its draft Standard Operating Procedures for the recognition of foreign halal certification bodies.
The exercise follows a scandal involving a so-called “cartel” of meat importers that have allegedly been bribing government officials to ensure their shipments from non-halal-certified sources were allowed to enter Malaysia. The scandal was brought to light by a local newspaper story on Dec 21.
In response, the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Religious Affairs) said in early January the government would come up with SOPs that will include amendments to the act related to halal certification to prevent the duplication of halal certificates and the use of digitisation in the barcodes of halal food products.
JAKIM recognises foreign halal certification bodies based on their ability to comply with Malaysia's procedures and guideliines for halal. Qualified HCBs are recognised for two years and they must submit annual reports to JAKIM. The natioal authority conducts a review audit to renew the appointment period.
JAKIM’s draft SOPs can be viewed at this link and public comments can be logged here.
Public comments can be logged from Thursday (Feb 11) until Mar 1.
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