ASSALAAMU ALAIKUM WA RAHMATULLAH Alhamdulillah was-salatu was-salaamu 'ala rasoolillah. All thanks and praise is to ALLAH, Subhanahu wa ta'ala, and we ask that HIS blessings and peace be upon HIS Messenger, Muhammad, salla ALLAHu alaihi wa sallam.
How can the food and nutrition industry take advantage of halal consumers' needs and eating habits post-Ramadan? According to Pan Arab Research Center, post-Ramadan injects more economic activity in many Muslim-majority countries. Ogilvy Noor, in a contributed article in Financial Times, also noted the unique needs and food opportunities in Muslim-majority countries after Ramadan's fasting:
"…take the issue of getting fit and losing weight. After a month of fasting, it may appear that any Muslim wishing to lose weight would already have done it. Not so.
The most obvious point is that going to the gym or doing any kind of exercise is difficult while fasting – and exercising in a fashion unsuited to fasting can actually be counter-productive. But what takes insider insight is the fact that many Muslims actually put on weight during Ramadan and Eid. That's because they are often eating overly indulgent and inappropriate foods between sunset and sunrise – especially in years like this one, when Ramadan in the northern hemisphere coincided with the longest days of the year. This makes it a great time for the health sector to step up and show its understanding of the reality of life post-Ramadan for Muslims." For many companies specializing in health, wellness, and weight loss, the post-Ramadan period can provide a time to capitalize on the halal consumer's interest to gradually step back into normal weight and fitness. Halal consumers who have gained weight will be looking for healthy and convenience packaged foods and supplements.
IFANCA Presents at Prepared Foods' R&D Applications Seminar 2011
Asma Ahad, IFANCA's director of Halal Market Development, presented "Halal: Your Global Competitive Advantage" at the Prepared Foods' 2011 R&D Applications Seminar on Wednesday, August 3, 2011 at the Hyatt Regency O'Hare in Chicago, IL. She discussed the local and global opportunities associated with halal certification. Several examples of small, medium, and large companies were given, that have experienced growth by delivering on the needs of their consumer base. A brief video of what halal means and what it takes to go halal was also shared. The attendees had a genuine interest in developing halal compliant products. During the discussion Ahad responded to several questions associated with halal certification.
The Prepared Foods' R&D Applications Seminar is one of the premiere food science seminar events that aims to provide a practical ":how to": applications-oriented event dedicated to further educating the food & beverage formulators on specific application challenges. To learn more about the seminar please visit: www.rdseminarchicago.com.
IFANCA Presents Halal Education Seminar at the Industrial Council of Nearwest Chicago (ICNC) for Small, Medium and Startup Food Companies
IFANCA will be presenting an educational seminar on the "Global and Local Opportunities of Halal Markets" at the Industrial Council of Nearwest Chicago (ICNC) on November 9, 2011. ICNC's mission is "to strengthen companies in the Kinzie Industrial Corridor and to facilitate economic and community development." ICNC fulfills this mission through providing services to strengthen the 2,000 plus companies in the Kinzie Corridor. Some of these services include providing educational seminars under the umbrella of its International Trade Center (ITC), a program that counsels companies in all phases of export readiness. ICNC is a not-for-profit organization and represents 400 companies. To read more about ICNC, refer to www.industrialcouncil.com/about.
KSA's First International Conference and Exhibition on Halal Food Control to be Held in February 2012
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Saudi Food and Drug Authority (SFDA) is hosting the first international conference on control of halal food. The conference will aim to clarify the concept of halal food and its requirements from an Islamic perspective and boost public-private cooperation in relation to halal food control at regional and international levels. Main topics of the conference will include; control and supervision of halal food at all stages of food production, methods applied to detect unlawful substances of halal food, stunning and automated mechanical slaughter, and lawfulness of foods produced by genetic modification and nanotechnology. More information can be found at the SFDA website (Arabic,English).
AMAL and Sabeel Pantry Organizing 10th Annual Thanksgiving Turkey Drive
The Sabeel Food Pantry (IFANCA's outreach initiative) in conjunction with AMAL (American Muslims for Activism and Learning) is pleased to announce the 10th annual Thanksgiving Turkey Drive. Every year the pantry donates hundreds of turkeys to needy families in the Chicagoland area during the time of thanksgiving. This year’s goal is to give away 750 turkeys to the families of Emmett Till Academy and IMAN (Inner-city Muslim Action Network) those neighbors who may not otherwise be able to have it on their tables.
"For the past 9 years, you have helped the needy, regardless of their faith, race or creed. You could donate to continue the tradition!"– Dr. Farhat Quadri, Community Relations Director-IFANCA
Turkey Drive c/o Jihad Shoshara PO Box 535 La Grange, IL 60525
IFANCA Co-sponsors Pakistan Day
On Sunday, September 18th, 2011 at Warren Park in Chicago, around 5,000 Pakistani-Americans celebrated Pakistan's 64thIndependence Day. The day of Independence is actually August 14th; however it was celebrated in September due to the Ramadan holiday during the month of August.
IFANCA and It's Staff Donated to Islamic Relief USA for Somalia Fund
During the holy month of Ramadan, IFANCA staff organized a donation drive for the refugees in the drought and famine ridden African region of Somalia. Media reports discussed how more than 1 million refugees are left homeless and do not have access to fresh water; they are also in urgent need of food, medicine, and clothing.
It was a great effort by IFANCA and its staff of around 50 employees who donated generously for this noble cause with total collections close to $10,000.00. The donation was given to IRUSA (Islamic Relief USA) a non-for-profit charity organization that has been providing emergency aid to Somalia since 1996. IRUSA also operates a field office in the East African country to implement and oversee programs that would alleviate suffering due to continued violence, drought and famine. The programs would help internally displaced populations. Reasons for IFANCA to select IRUSA were: It has received the 4-Star charity rating by Charity Navigator and IRUSA has been the most active Islamic charity in Somalia than compared to others.
Donations can still be sent to IFANCA's head office in Park Ridge, IL (Attention Zeshan, make checks payable to IFANCA and please write Somalia Relief in the memo) or you can donate directly online to Islamic Relief USA at www.irusa.org.
The Philadelphia Inquirer published an in-depth article about halal food standards in the United States. The informative article is titled, "Food Preparation Standards in Muslim Community Open for Interpretation", and provides insight into the increasing need for third party halal certification. Third-party halal certification is an endorsement provided by a credible and competent organization that does not benefit from the sale of the product. Without trustworthy third-party halal certification organizations, manufacturers to wholesale suppliers to retailers will remain vulnerable to halal consumer misinformation. To read complete article, click here.
IFANCA Exhibits at the American Muslim Consumer Conference 2011 on October 29, 2011, Hyatt Regency, New Brunswick, New Jersey. Click here for more information.
IFANCA to Give Halal Education Seminar at Industrial Council of Nearwest Chicago (ICNC) on November 9, 2011. Seminar titled Global and Local Halal Market Opportunities will be held at ICNC 320 N. Damen Avenue, Chicago, IL. Click here for more information.
New IFANCA Halal Certified Companies
Companies and Location
Description of Halal-Certified Products
Baqi Inc. , Encinao, CA
Binzhou Taiyu Wheat Co., Ltd , Binzhou City, Shandong, China
Chocolat Uzma Sharif, Bolingbrook, IL
Exotic Chocolate Collection
Eastman Chemical Company, Kingsport, TN
Probenz, Sodium Benzoate
EUROGERM SA , Saint Apollinaire, France
Gerber Ingredients S. A. , Cartago, San Jose, Costa Rica
HELIOS PASTA INDUSTRY - PAN. SP. DAKOS S.A. PASTA & FOOD PRODUCTS, Athens, Attika, Greece
HuaJia Foods Co., Ltd, Dongguan, Guangdong, China
Jiaxing Shengyuan IMP&EXP Co., Ltd., Jiaxing, Zhejiang, China
Jiliding Marine Biotech, Taicang, Jiangsu, China
Fish Gelatin & Collagen
Canada, Malaysia & USA
Linshu Fangxing Foodstuff Co., Ltd. , Linyi, Shandong, China
Fruits and Vegetables
Premier Ingredients Inc. , Hackensack, NJ
QualiTech, Inc., Chaska, MN
Reiter Dairy (Dean Foods), Springfield, OH
Shangri-la Kangmei Dairy Products Co., Ltd., Shangrila, Yunnan, China
Sweet Green Fields, Bellingham, WA
Yancheng VIO Organic Chemicals Co., Binhai, Jiangsu, China