IFT 2013 Annual Conference
Friday, July 12 thru Tuesday, July 16, 2013
IFT Annual Meeting & Food Expo®
July 13-16, 2013 | Chicago, IL | #IFT13
IFANCA will be present on site for all three days at Food Expo – booth # 765. Auditors will be there to greet and to answer questions regarding halal certification to the interested attendees.
As informed earlier, IFANCA recently migrated the subscription service to a more efficient vehicle. This migration required subscribers to re-opt in to receiving IFANCA email. A message was sent to subscribers requiring them to accept receiving email from IFANCA. If you are not receiving the IFANCA announcements and messages, please be sure you accepted the opt-in from the email you received. It may be the email went to your Spam folder. If you wish to receive free IFANCA updates, the latest news and a heads-up when new issues of Halal Digest© and Halal Consumer© are posted, you will need to confirm your interest by clicking on the link in the email that was sent to you. Only confirmed subscribers will continue to receive free IFANCA updates. Thank you.
We all appreciate positive feedback and compliments from each other. Manufacturers are no different, and they also like to get some compliments from consumers. If you are enjoying a halal-certified product, why not take a moment to contact the producer and let them know your satisfaction, and appreciation. You can always do this by phone, email or on their websites. They too will be happy to hear from consumers, especially when these are positive feed backs. While you are at it, please copy IFANCA on the email at email@example.com. Such appreciation will encourage these manufacturers to add more halal products to market in USA.
By the end of the year, companies that sell meat and chicken to the country will have to register and pay a fee of US$ 58,600 per production unit. The objective is to ensure food quality.
São Paulo - Saudi Arabia has changed its rules for companies that export beef and chicken to the country. By the end of this year, all export facilities will have to register on the website of Saudi Food & Drug Authority (SFDA), the country's health monitoring agency, and pay a 220,000 riyal fee, equivalent to US$ 58,600.
After registering, the SFDA will advise the company on how to pay the fee. Each unit that produces and exports meats to Saudi Arabia will have to do this and pay the registration fee, even if they belong to the same company. Producing plants that do not meet these requirements may not be allowed to export to Saudi.
In this registration, in Portuguese, the exporter plant will have to inform its Federal Inspection Service (SIF) registration number, issued by the government of Brazil, and the characteristics of the production unit (type of product made, production capacity, and location). It will also be necessary to submit a copy of SIF registration in English or Arabic, not necessarily sworn, and quality certificates like the ISO 22000, ISO 9001, GMP or HACCP. Any production unit in any country that exports or plans to export to Saudi Arabia must follow the procedure.
The SFDA purpose with this measure is to increase food safety, of both imported and locally produced products. The measure, for example, avoids the country’s import of meat that does not follow the rules of halal slaughter, required by Islam, or meat other than beef. Based on this record, the SFDA should inspect poultry and beef production plants worldwide. Until these inspections are made, companies may continue to export normally.
On May 20, a Brazilian delegation met in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, with the general director of SFDA, Khaled Al Aydi, and the imported food control executive, Khalid Al Nurshed. On the Brazilian side, the meeting was attended by the government relations executive at the Arab Brazilian Chamber of Commerce, Tamer Mansour, and representatives of the Brazilian Halal Food Centre (Cibal Halal), the Brazilian Poultry Union (Ubabef), the Brazilian Beef Industry and Exporters Association (Abiec), the Embassy of Brazil in Riyadh and companies JBS and BRF.
At the meeting, Aydi and Nurshed delivered a document explaining the "step by step" process for the new Saudi regulations and stressed that the measures were taken to increase control of the health standards of the Arab country.
The CEO at the Arab Brazilian Chamber, Michel Alaby, said the increased demands can be beneficial for Brazilian companies, as they represent a testament to quality.
"This is a way to protect consumer health. It will be like a quality seal showing that the producer has SFDA registration. It is a declaration of compliance with the Saudi regulations," he said. The Arab Chamber will distribute an e-mail informing the changes required by the Saudis and the procedures that must be adopted.
Alaby believes that the standards adopted by the Saudis can be beneficial to exports to the entire Middle East. "Companies that comply will have a differential for export to the entire Gulf region and to Islamic countries," he said.
Likewise, the executive director at Ubabef, Ricardo Santin, said the new rules should be positive for Brazilian companies, as they must guarantee the quality of products. "They are improving inspection to generate greater consumer confidence. Our companies are in agreement, and, thus, there will be no misunderstandings or forgeries," he said.
According to the executive director at Abiec, Fernando Sampaio, some exporters had doubts as to how to register, but after meeting with representatives of the SFDA, in Riyadh, the problems doubts were cleared.
According to the Ministry of Development, Industry and Foreign Trade, between January and April this year, Brazil exported the equivalent to US$ 513.3 million in meat to Saudi Arabia. In the same period last year, the country had exported US$ 412.2 million, including beef and chicken.
This year, only chicken was exported as Saudi Arabia has placed an embargo on imports of Brazilian beef since the government announced, in late 2012, that a cow that had died in Paraná had been carrying the agent that generates mad cow disease, although the animal had not developed the disease.
Arab Brazilian Chamber of Commerce
With Rafael Abdulmassih, Business and Markets Manager
Tel: (+55 11) 3147-4116
|Company name||Product Type||Market||Region|
|AB CALSA, S.A. de C.V.||Yeast-Active||Industry||Worldwide|
|Anhui Truelove Foodstuffs Co.,Ltd||Nuts & Seeds NS. - Other||Industry||Malaysia|
|Cedar Valley Cheese||Cheese||FoodService - Bulk||Worldwide|
|Innovation Laboratories, Inc.||Nutritional Supplements||Industry||Worldwide|
|Shandong Kanbo Biochemical Technology Co., Ltd||Sweeteners||Industry||Worldwide|
|Shanghai Fanzhi Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd||Food Chemicals||Industry||Worldwide|
|Smith Frozen Foods||Food Products||Industry||Worldwide|
|Southeastern Mills, Inc.||Meat & Poultry – Processed||Industry||United States|
|Vittorio, Inc.||Spice & Seasonings||FoodService - Bulk||Saudi Arabia|
|Better Batter Gluten Free Flour, LLC||Batter / Breading||Retail||USA and Canada|
|Qingdao Yongfa Foods Co. Ltd||Food Products||Industry||Worldwide|
|Wudel Incorporated||Dairy Products||FoodService - Bulk||Worldwide|
|Southeastern Mills, Inc.||Meat & Poultry – Processed||Industry||USA|
What a blessed time of year when the glorious month of Allah connects with His sweet summer season. All this heat though, will tire us out quicker in fasting season. So, these are ten fruits of Allah (also in season) known to keep us hydrated and focused on connecting to Him.
REMEMBER! The recommended amount of drinking water is 8-10 glasses per day. In Ramadan it will be a digestive challenge to drink vast amounts in short periods, particularly after breaking the fast. Top up your water shortage by eating 2-4 juicy fruits per meal for bursts of energy. Stay hydrated insha-Allah.
1. Watermelon – Hydration rating 92%. As this fruit is mostly water and sugar it's packed with essential rehydration salts magnesium, calcium, sodium and potassium so it can actually hydrate you more effectively than water.
EAT IT! Blend watermelon chunks with ice and coconut palm sugar for a light Iftaar dessert.
2. Oranges - Hydration rating 87% water. Oranges are sweet and packed with more than 100% of the daily recommended value for vitamin C. Plus that citrusy perfume...! Wallahi (by Allah) I believe it's a heavenly scent. Love it.
EAT IT! Squeeze fresh orange juice into chocolate drinks and cut up segments into fruit salads.
3. Berries - Strawberries rank as the 4th strongest antioxidant fruit and are made up of 92% water. Raspberries and blueberries are also at their peak during the summer. Full of vitamin C, berries are known to clear the arteries, regulate blood sugar and taste awesome. Go for organic, eat a handful each day.
EAT THEM! I tend to spoil berries with whipping cream or folding into an Eton mess but you don't do that. Eat berries with cereal for Suhoor (morning meal) or as a parfait with yoghurt and granola.
4. Figs – Known as At-Teen in the Qur'an, these summer beauties are indulgent fudgy fruits with a high-output on the health scale. They're known to lower blood pressure, improve digestion, help with weight loss; even the leaves of the fig tree lower the insulin required by diabetics. As one of the world's healthiest foods, figs provide the fibre energy to keep moving and read Qur'an.
EAT IT! Slice fruits with coconut milk ice cream/Kulfi, blend into a fig smoothie or make a fig chutney with some medjool dates for breaking the fast each day. See? Sunnah-approved.
5. Grapes – These hydration gems are known for their extremely high content of Resveratrol, a substance that acts as an antioxidant and is heart-friendly. Bursting water with each bite, take your pick from purple, red, black or green. One of summer’s most delicious fruits.
EAT IT! Slice into fruit salads or just eat whole. One my favourite mix-ups is eating a single grape with a morsel of cheese and sprinkling of coffee granules. Sounds weird but tastes gooood!
6. Grapefruit - Hydration rating 90% water. Sweet but zingy, grapefruits contain only 30 calories and the detoxifying limonoids, which according to research, may inhibit cancer tumours. Either way, eating natural is always healthier, happier and a way of recognising Allah. Bismillah!
EAT IT! Pan fry segments to caramalise grapefruit and eat with waffles. Cut a fruit in half, sprinkle with fairtrade sugar and scoop to eat with a spoon. *Warning, do not get into eyes. Ow.
7. Coconut water - Hydration rating 95%. Coconut water (not milk) is the liquid found in young green coconuts that gets absorbed as the coconut fruit matures. It has a relatively low sodium and carbohydrate content and tastes dry but refreshing. Avoid the hype around coconut water but drink it as a blessing and nourishing fruit in Ramadan.
DRINK IT! Buy fresh and buy from local greengrocers. Avoid the packed cartons which tend to include preservatives for a long shelf-life and dilute the drink.
8. Cantaloupe - Hydration rating of 89%. Cantaloupe is an exceptionally good fruit for supporting energy production and the ability to keep the blood sugar stable. With all that goodness and flavour this is a top munchable fruit. That's not even a word but I stand by the fruit!
EAT IT! Blend the flesh into pulp and freeze for instant sorbet, or skin and cut into chunks for a mixed watermelon/sweet melon salad.
9. Pineapple - This exceptionally juicy fruit is packed with bromelain, a mixture of compounds with potent anti-inflammatory powers. In other words, eat pineapple now and you may avoid pain meds in the future.
EAT IT! Pan fry pineapple rings (without the skin) to caramalise and eat with yoghurt/ ice cream or create fruit kebabs by piercing bitesize chunks onto wooden skewers with strawberries, grapes and melon.
10. Mango - The king of the fruit jungle, mangoes provide a lot of bang for their 135 calories, and they're a good source of vitamins A, B6, and C, plus fibre. British weather is too cool to produce spectacularly sweet mangoes thus we get them imported!
EAT IT! There's no need to mess with this fruit. Slice to eat or cut in a cross-cross fashion to turn out a 'hedgehog' design. Open mouth and consume. Alhamdulillah.
Dates are ancient fruit enjoyed by people for thousands of years. The date palm and dates are mentioned in the Quran a number of times. Perhaps the most notable is the mention in connection with Maryam (the Virgin Mary), alaihas salaam (peace be upon her). When her labor pains began and she was about to deliver 'Issa (Jesus), alaihis salaam, she felt bad and wished she had never been born. She rested at a date palm tree and ALLAH, Subhanahu wa ta'ala, informs us of what happened in Surat Maryam:
And the pains of childbirth drove her to the trunk of a palm tree: she cried (in her anguish) "Ah! Would that I had died before this! Would that I had been a thing forgotten and out of sight!" But (a voice) cried to her from beneath the (palm tree): "Grieve not! For thy Lord has provided a rivulet beneath you; And shake towards you the trunk of the palm tree; it will let fall fresh ripe dates upon you. So eat and drink and cool (your) eye. And if you see any man, say, 'I have vowed a fast to (ALLAH) Most Gracious, and this day will I enter into no talk with any human being”. (Maryam: 23-26)
This gives a glimpse into the benefits of the date palm. It gave a resting place to Maryam, alaihas salaam, a woman experiencing the pain of childbirth and in anguish over delivering a baby out of wedlock. It also provided her food for nourishment and sustenance during childbirth. ALLAH, Subhanahu wa ta'ala, could have provided her with any choice of food and yet, HE chose the date as the proper food for a woman in labor.
Even the Pharaohs recognized the value of dates and they etched drawings of dates on the walls of their temples.
There are over 4000 varieties of dates in the world. Dates require a warm, moist climate to grow and the hotter, the better. They grow in many regions of the world, from Malaysia to India, to the Middle East and North Africa and the warm regions of North America.
There are male and female date palms and fertilization must occur for dates to be formed. Female flowers produce the fruit and male flowers produce the pollen. A healthy male palm tree can pollinate fifty female palm trees.
Whenever a date seed is being planted, a new kind of date is originated. For the same variety of dates, an offshoot must be planted. The offshoots develop produces near the base of the palm. It usually takes 5 to 10 years for an offshoot to develop a root system. When it takes root, it is safe to remove it and plant it elsewhere. After relocation, it takes another 10 or so to mature and fully bear fruits.
Each variety of dates has a distinctive taste and texture. Some dates are soft and contain lots of moisture while others are dry with little moisture. Most contain a large amount of sugar, which is 100% soluble. Dates also contain fiber, vitamins, hormones, minerals and enzymes. Dates are a complete food and one can sustain themselves on dates alone. In fact, many civilizations have done just that. We know that the main staple of the Muslims in the early days was a diet of dates. To this day, there are farmers and other Arabs whose main source of nutrition and sustenance are dates.
Modern science has confirmed a number of facts about dates:
- They are rich in nutrients, they are easy to digest, and are good for childbearing women and for the fetuses they bear.
- They contain hormones that help strengthen the uterus to prepare for childbirth and to return the uterus to the pre-pregnancy state after childbirth.
- They contain hormones that help produce milk in for nursing mothers.
- They contain a hormone that reduces bleeding. This is especially useful during childbirth.
- They contain a high concentration of easy to digest sugars, which give quick energy. This is good for everyone, and especially for women in labor and those breaking their fast at the end of the day.
- They contain fiber, which is useful in digestion and helps reduce cholesterol and a small amount of protein and amino acids, the essential building blocks of man.
- They also contain lipids, vitamins and minerals, including vitamin A, a number of B vitamins (thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, B-6), pantothenic acid and phosphorus.
Dates are believed to increase virility, to help people suffering from bronchitis and respiratory ailments, and to protect from infectious diseases such as malaria. And they are cholesterol free.
Dates can be eaten raw, used in cooking, or in various products, including confectionery, bakery, cereals, and sauces. While alcohol can be produced from dates, this is against Islamic guidance and most medical advice.
In fact, there are at least three stages when dates can be eaten. The first stage is when they are still yellow and somewhat raw. At that stage they are form a perhaps a little tart. The next stage is when they begin to ripen and become softer with dark spots. This is the stage when Maryam, alaihas salaam, ate the dates during childbirth. The final stage is when they have ripened and are their final color. They have dried out some and become shriveled up. This is the most familiar stage of dates.
There are a may Ahadith about dates. To quote a few:
Ibn Umar, radiya ALLAHu anhuma, (may ALLAH be pleased with them) narrates that the Prophet, salla ALLAHu alaihi wa sallam, asked: There is a tree whose leaves do not shed and it is similar to a Muslim, so tell me about it. We were silent and I thought it was the date palm but I was to shy too speak, so we said, Tell us what it is. He, salla ALLAHu alaihi wa sallam, said: It is the date palm. (Reported by Al-Bukhari)
Sa'd, radiya ALLAHu anhu, narrates that the Prophet, salla ALLAHu alaihi wa sallam, said: Whoever awakens to eat 7 dates of the 'Ajwa variety, will not be harmed by poison or black magic. (Reported by Al-Bukhari)
'Aisha, radiya ALLAHu anha, narrated that the Prophet, salla ALLAHu alaihi wa sallam, said: A household with dates will never go hungry. (Reported by Ad-Darimi)
In other Ahadith we learn that the Prophet, salla ALLAHu alaihi wa sallam, recommended those who are fasting to break their fast, at sunset, by eating an uneven number of dates. If they have none, they should drink water and in some narrations milk.
It seems you cannot go wrong with dates, so start your day with 1, 3, 5 or 7 pieces of dates and see what a difference it will make.