Those who live according to the rules of the Islamic faith must also adhere to certain nutritional rules. This also means that the meat consumed is produced in a certain way.
It is a term that is being read more and more by the German public: “halal.” Be it on the refrigerated shelves in supermarkets or on the menu of restaurants: There is always a comment that these dishes are “halal”. But what exactly the word means and what special features there are in manufacturing is unknown to many.
Halal and Haram
The word comes from Arabic and means “allowed”, or “permissible”. In terms of food, therefore, all dishes that are made according to the rules of Islam are halal. Everything that is not allowed is classified as “haram”, or “forbidden”. Halal classification is particularly important for meat products, as pork in Islam is considered impure.
But there are also strict rules in Islam when it comes to processing meat, which can lead to conflicts with German and European law. “According to Islamic rules, an animal has to be slaughtered alive, so its throat is cut so that it bleeds out,” explains Tekin Tas, who has been running the “Merkez” butcher’s shop in Biebrich for three years. The so-called method of “slaughtering”, meaning that the animal is killed without prior stunning, is prohibited in Germany.
“It is important that the animal is still alive when cutting through the throat.” – Tekin Tas
This is not absolutely necessary in Islam, as Tas explains: “It is important that the animal is still alive when cutting through the throat. It can also be stunned beforehand, for example by an electric shock. ”This is also the method used by the slaughterhouse from which the Biebricher obtains his meat, so that the meat is classified as halal, there are many other rules, as the butcher explains: “It is very important that pork is not processed in parallel in the slaughterhouse. The butcher himself must also be a Muslim and slaughter the animal in the name of Allah. ”The processing, ie the cutting up of the animal, could also be carried out by a non-Muslim.
According to a report in the German media, the global demand for halal meat has risen sharply in recent years and is still going up. In addition to the growth of the Muslim population, a more intensive use of nutrition is one reason why Tas can also confirm for his Wiesbaden customers: “My customers want to know exactly which slaughterhouse the meat comes from, as there are also some suppliers that do Process pork in the same building. “
His many non-Muslim customers are also very interested in the production of the meat: “Some have doubts, but if I explain to them that the animals are anesthetized before slaughter, they are reassured.” Some would also buy halal meat, because it would taste better from their point of view.
In addition to private customers, the Biebrich butcher also supplies several restaurants and canteens in Wiesbaden, including that of the ELW, where halal dishes would always be on the menu, out of consideration for the Muslim employees.