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Halal just means anything permissible in Islam,[1] but it is commonly used to refer to food or drink meeting Islamic dietary codes, especially meat.

When you see "Halal" outside a food store, as a general rule it means two things: top-notch lamb, and no bacon.

For convenience's sake, many slaughterhouses use Halal as a standard, also satisfying the ravening carnivores of the general public.

Animal cruelty[edit]

See the main article on this topic: Animal rights

The independent UK government advisory organisation, Farm Animal Welfare Association (FAWC), released a report in 1985 regarding religious slaughter of animals and again brought up the topic in its 2007 report, in which it observed unnecessary suffering to animals that were not pre-stunned prior to slaughter (i.e., under Halal and Kosher methods). The UK animal welfare organisation, the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, also holds this position, citing the FAWC's reports as evidence.[2]

Muslims and Jews, on the other hand, are likely to argue that these slaughterhouses aren't following the correct rules, and cite another study that properly-slaughtered animals suffer less than those that have been stunned.[3] Recently, the study has been countered by newer ones using a better standard of measurement.[4] Wilhelm Schulze of the University of Hanover, Germany, concluded in 1978 that Halal slaughter was more humane than slaughter following stunning, but warned in his report that the stunning technique may have been incorrectly carried out.[4]

Attack of the bigoted idiots[edit]

In Australia, a political action group known as "Reclaim Australia" and its child organisation, the United Patriots Front have constantly put forth the rhetoric that Halal food needs to be boycotted, because it supposedly funds terrorism. They haven't put out any evidence for this claim, however. American Pam Geller -- ever alert to stealth jihad -- has warned a grateful public that those juicy Butterball turkeys are Halal, and therefore are a threat to patriotic Thanksgiving celebrators.[5]

Australian government agencies state that there is no evidence that Halal has any link to terrorism.[6] Of course, the Islamphobes plead that absence of evidence does not mean evidence of absence.[7]

In fact ABC News even did an investigation on the supposed link between Halal food and terrorism:

The result? Negative.

See also[edit]


  1. The opposite of "halal" is "haram," or "forbidden," from whence comes the name of Boko Haram, meaning "Western knowledge is forbidden."
  4. 4.0 4.1
  6. ABC News Fact check: Does halal certification fund terrorism?
  7. ABC News The Truth About Halal A quote of the transcript: "MIKE HOLT: Well, a lack of information doesn't s, doesn't show that it's not there, does it. All it means is that they haven't done their homework properly."