Halal: you’ve seen the term before, be it in an article you’ve read, on a label at your local grocer, or at the falafel place around the corner. Yet, despite its prevalence around and within Canadian culture today, the general public knows very little about these dietary restrictions; and, as with many unfamiliar cultural practices, common misconceptions have accrued. In the spirit of knowledge, we’ve gathered—and dispelled—some of those misconceptions here.
“Halal just means never eating any pork.”
This misconception probably arose out of making guesses based on menus at halal restaurants: there’s never any pork, but there’s usually lamb, beef, and chicken. Halal is a broad set of dietary rules and restrictions, far beyond limiting the consumption of a single animal; while pork is forbidden entirely, halal governs the preparation of all food.
“Halal food is reserved for Muslim people.”
Because it’s a religious practice, it is true that Muslim people tend to be the main consumers of halal food products. However, this does not forbid non-Muslims from eating halal. In Arabic, “halal” literally translates to “permissible”, not “exclusive”. If the halal chicken is better than all the others at your grocer and you’re not Muslim, don’t hesitate to continue eating it.
“Halal only deals with the slaughter of animals.”
Slaughter is indeed crucial to halal food preparation, however halal relates to the entire process, not just the killing. For instance, animals must be well fed, have ready access to water, and be free of any ailments before slaughter. Furthermore, the facilities in which the animals are processed must be free of contact with any haram (Arabic for “forbidden”) products, so food processors must not handle any pork, for example.
D&D Poultry offers a wide selection of halal meats to satisfy all your dietary needs—without sacrificing taste and variety. Still have questions about halal products? Check out our post on the basics of halal food.
Whether its cooked or breaded, lamb, beef, or chicken, D&D has the halal product for you.