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IFANCAIslamic Food and Nutrition Council of America

Company Profile

 

About IFANCA

The Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA), is one of the world’s leading halal- certification organizations. Established in 1982, this not-for-profit organization has been dedicated to the promotion of halal, and to providing information and education to halal consumers, and other seekers of halal information. IFANCA has evolved into one the most respected, technical and professional halal-certification organization recognized worldwide.


What does IFANCA do?

IFANCA’s team of scientists and Islamic Scholars constitute the IFANCA Board of Directors. IFANCA’s certification program is respected by food and pharmaceutical industry professionals worldwide. As a testament of this confidence, majority of all pharmaceutical halal certification in the United States is conducted by IFANCA.

Today, IFANCA certifies over 2200 companies across the globe, with over 23,000 products and ingredients. Ranging from food products to non-food products, IFANCA-certified products cover categories such as meat and poultry, processed foods, prepared meals, frozen food, food ingredients, pharmaceuticals, vaccines, cosmetics, skin care products, and even packaging materials.

IFANCA is known for its halal consultation and educational materials to government agencies; for developing halal MRE’s for military and displaced populations; for creating halal kitchen guidelines for hospital food service, school cafeterias and correctional institutions. IFANCA also publishes and distributes information, both in print and on the internet. Publications include “Islamic Dietary Laws and Concepts”, Elementary Book on Halal and Haraam, and Industrial Halal Food Publication Manual. IFANCA also publishes a bi-annual Halal Consumer Magazine, and a monthly electronic newsletter called the Halal Digest. Both of these resources are digitally uploaded and maintained on IFANCA’s informative website, www.ifanca.org.

IFANCA organizes halal information workshops, education seminars, and discussions with Islamic Community Centers to inform Muslims about halal food and personal care products. They also conduct similar halal information workshops for industry client’s employees at their production sites, to further disseminate knowledge on halal production requirements.


IFANCA’s ‘Crescent-M’ Certification Symbol

IFANCA’s Crescent-M symbol is an internationally recognized symbol for halal certification. Muslims around the world accept IFANCA’s Crescent-M symbol on products, knowing that IFANCA-certified products are truly halal, and their halal certification standards are the best in their class. At the same time, food companies, food marketers, and exporters get the satisfaction that their products will not be rejected in the target countries.

IFANCA is recognized by the governmental halal-regulating bodies in Malaysia, Indonesia, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and Singapore. These religious bodies monitor halal regulations in their nations, and they all endorse IFANCA’s halal-certification program.


IFANCA’s Role in the Global Halal Certification Industry

In order to promote halal, IFANCA performs a leading role as a bridge between the food industry and halal consumers. To achieve this, IFANCA has since its inception successfully sponsored 12 international halal food conferences, both in the US and in other countries. The most recent international halal food conference was held in Brussels in March 2010, and focused on the theme of establishing halal quality assurance standards. These conferences provide education and information for industry participants interested in halal certification, as well as to members of academia and representatives of the major government regulating bodies.

IFANCA has consistently promoted halal for nearly 3 decades, and is often reached out by members of the press to provide insight into national and global halal certification issues. Featured in various media such as The Wall Street Journal, Prepared Foods, Poultry Magazine, and CNN; IFANCA was also presented “Best Halal Related Service Provider” Award by Halal Journal at the World Halal Forum in 2007.


IFANCA’s Corporate Social Responsibility

IFANCA gives back to the community by supporting Sabeel Food Pantry, an organization it helped to found. Some programs include an Annual Turkey Drive to deliver turkeys to deserving students and families in Chicago.

IFANCA, in collaboration with Management and Science University (MSU), Malaysia, offers educational scholarships to deserving students for research work. Projects include research and surveys on halal meals for schools and institutional catering, specifically for the Malaysian food industry.


IFANCA Key Facts

  • IFANCA is headquartered in Chicago, IL and maintains offices in California and Toronto, Canada.
  • IFANCA certifies halal food production in over 55 countries around the globe.
  • IFANCA-certified halal products are sold in nearly every country of the world.
  • IFANCA certifies halal products in all food industries.
  • IFANCA provides halal certification and supervision services for meat and poultry slaughter.
  • IFANCA certifies halal cosmetics, packaging materials, and chemicals.
  • IFANCA Halal Certification is accepted by all Muslim countries and halal importing regions.




IFANCAIslamic Food and Nutrition Council of America

IFANCA® to Participate in Halal Panel at the American Muslim Consumer Conference (AMCC) 2010 in New Brunswick

Contact: Maria Omar
+1-773-283-3708 Ext: 222
m.omar@ifanca.org

(October 22, 2010 – Chicago, IL...) Chicago-based Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®) will be presenting at the Second Annual American Muslim Consumer Conference (AMCC) 2010, on October 30th in New Brunswick, New Jersey.

The AMCC focuses on promoting dialog and raising awareness around the burgeoning American Muslim consumer market, a multicultural niche where many mainstream companies are now seeing a growing opportunity. This year, AMCC returns with the theme "Charting the Landscape”, and will once again serve as a platform for industry professionals to examine the American Muslim halal market sector and explore its rich potential.

Dr. Muhammad Munir Chaudry, President of Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA), and an expert in the halal industry, will be speaking on a panel entitled Halal: Opportunities and Challenges in North America. Chaudry describes halal certification as one of the foundations to building a loyal customer base. He says, “Credible, third-party halal certification resonates strongly with halal consumers. It gives them the peace of mind that the product they are buying is truly halal. It is one of the most effective ways to pursue the $170 billion US American-Muslim consumer market.”

The significance of halal certification today is clearly reflected in the approximate 80 percent growth in halal certified ingredients and food products in US and global halal markets, since 2005. Dr. Chaudry spoke on similar themes earlier this year, as a panelist at the National Restaurant Association Show 2010. IFANCA also participated at the Institute of Food Technology Expo 2010 to address the growing interest around halal-certified products in the United States.

 

IFANCA

Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®), is one of the world’s leading and well respected not-for-profit halal-certification agencies. Featured in various media such as The Wall Street Journal, Prepared Foods, and CNN, IFANCA has been promoting halal for the past 28 years. IFANCA was recognized in the Best Halal Related Service Provider Award by the Halal Journal at World Halal Forum 2007. IFANCA-certified halal products are sold in nearly every country of the world and cover all food industry categories.

For more information about IFANCA, www.ifanca.org.

 




IFANCAIslamic Food and Nutrition Council of America

Biography Profiles

 

Dr. Muhammad Munir Chaudry

Dr. Muhammad Munir Chaudry is a Founding Board Member and President of the Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®), an internationally respected not-for-profit halal- certification organization. Featured in various media such as The Wall Street Journal, Prepared Foods, and CNN, Dr. Chaudry is a pioneer in the field. Under his guidance, IFANCA has become a world leader in halal certification, with more than 22,000 certified products for 2,200 companies. Clients include industry leaders such as Nestle, PepsiCo, Abbott Nutrition, Mead Johnson, Firmenich and Hershey International, in industries as diverse as flavors and pharmaceuticals. IFANCA halal certified products are sold in every nation. Besides IFANCA, Dr. Chaudry is a food industry veteran with expertise in various technical and management positions. Here he has been responsible for quality assurance, human resources and employee training. He is the author of several papers and co-author of Halal Food Production, the single most widely used text on halal certification. He is a member of the Institute of Food Technologists and an expert consultant to the World Organization for Animal Health. A delegate for the UN International Trade Center and the American Spice Trade Association, he has conducted food safety workshops internationally. He has his PhD from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana in Food Science.


Dr. Muhamed Sadek
Dr. Mohamed Sadek is an accomplished professional with a background in Food Science, Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry. In 1966, he served in Malaysia’s Veterinary Services Department as a Veterinary Officer/Doctor. In 1970, he proceeded to U.K. for postgraduate studies and graduated with Master’s and Doctorate degrees in Food Science. Upon returning to Malaysia, he joined the Mara Institute of Technology at Shah Alam as Head of Food Technology Department in 1974. From 1982 to 1998, he served as Technical member of Malaysia’s Halal/Haram Committee. He assisted Malaysia’s Religious Affairs Department (JAKIM) from 1992 until 1998; a position which led him to conduct halal audits in Europe, South America and the U.S.A. During this time, he was actively assisting the Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®) with his expertise in halal certification, audits, and conferences. Dr. Sadek was appointed as IFANCA’s Director of International Affairs in 1996. In 1999, he was appointed as Vice President of the World Halal Food Council; while later serving in the Secretary General position of the organization from 2004 to 2006. Dr. Sadek is also visiting professor of Food and Nutrition at the Management and Science University (MSU) in Malaysia. From 2002 onwards he is Chairman of Islamic Food Council of Europe (IFCE), as well as Vice President at IFANCA since 2004.


Dr. Ahmed Sakr
Dr. Ahmad Sakr’s career consists of being an educator, field worker, scout leader, public speaker and an Islamic Scholar. Dr. Sakr has been affiliated with Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®) since its inception and he is a member of IFANCA’s Board of Directors. He spent a large part of his life teaching Food and Nutrition in American Universities and was selected as an Outstanding Educator of America in 1973. Dr. Sakr was educated at the American University of Beirut and the University of Illinois where he received his doctorate in Food Science and Nutrition. He also received his theological training from the late Grand Mufti of Lebanon and from several other notable Muslim Scholars. He served as Director of the Islamic Center of Beirut. During his student years in the US, he co- founded the Muslim Students’ Association in North America in which he led for some time. This organization later formed the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA); one of today’s most prominent Muslim organizations in North America. Dr. Sakr is a founding member of the World Council of Mosques headquartered in Mecca, as well as the first director and representative of the Muslim World League to the U.N. Featured in ABC’s “Nightline”, as well as the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), Dr. Sakr is known for discussing global Islamic issues on Islam, food, health, behavior, terrorism, and fundamentalism. Currently, he is the President of the Foundation for Islamic Knowledge; Director of the Islamic Education Center in Walnut, California; Member of Operation Safe Community; and member of the Walnut Interfaith Council in California. At last count, he has written over 65 books (in English and Arabic) and booklets, not counting the innumerable articles he has authored. Dr. Sakr's approach is to build a bridge of understanding thru commonalities with Muslims and non-Muslims alike. He recently visited the Vatican in Rome, Italy, where he participated in interfaith dialogue with Bishops, Cardinals and the Pope.


Dr. Syed Jaafar Al-Quaderi
Dr. Syed Jaafar Al-Quaderi has been Religious Advisor to Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®) since 1982. Dr. Quaderi is a graduate of Nizamia University, Hyderabad, India, and a recipient of Doctoral degree from Al-Azhar University, Egypt in 1970. His PhD researched the Resolutions and Permissions in Islam at the Faculty of Shariah and Law, in USUL al-Fiqh. His command of Arabic language is outstanding, evidenced by his 11 years as a Radio Cairo Announcer. Concurrently, he taught Arabic at the American University, Cairo, and also conducted classes at the Indian Embassy in Cairo. Dr. Quaderi also worked at the Osmania University in India as an editor of Arabic manuscripts of historic significance. After moving to the USA in 1980, Dr. Quaderi taught Arabic at Chicago’s North-Eastern University, and American Islamic College for 6 years. Since 1986, he has been teaching Arabic, Islamic Studies, as well as leading congregations in two of Chicago area’s Islamic Centers. Dr. Quaderi is well-versed in comparative knowledge of Islamic schools of thought. His command of languages is excellent; especially in Arabic, Urdu and English.


Dr. Javed Rashid
Dr. Javed has 26 years of experience in Quality Control, Quality Assurance, and Product Development in South Asia, Middle East, Far East, United Kingdom and the United States. He has 20 years of experience in auditing of food processing and packaging operations in various countries. He has affiliated with IFANCA® for the past 15 years, and provides guidance in plant inspection related matters as a Director of Halal Audit for food, cosmetic, pharmaceutical and non-food manufacturing industries. Presently, Dr. Javed is Vice President of Technical Services in a liquid condiments, sauces and salad dressings manufacturing company in North Carolina, USA. He serves as a Resident Practitioner of SQF 2000 Global Food Safety Initiative. During his career, Dr. Rashid also received food production and quality assurance related training from Brabender Food Testing Training Center, Germany and American Institute of Baking, USA. Dr. Javed Rashid obtained his Master’s degree in Nutrition from the University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan; as well as a Master’s degree in Food Science from the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, United Kingdom. He received his Ph.D. in Cereal Science from Kansas State University, Manhattan, USA. He holds Certified HACCP audit certification from American Society for Quality, as well as GMA-SAFE auditor status to assess food ingredients and finished product suppliers for food excellence. He is a Professional Member of the Institute of Food Technologists and Senior Member of American Society for Quality/Food Drug and Cosmetics Division.


Dr. Sabir Ali
Dr. Sabir Ali is a Food Scientist with over 25 years of Food Industry experience in Quality Assurance, Product Development and Manufacturing. He is senior food inspector, and member of Technical Committee, at Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®) since 1999. Previously, he was Director of Technical Services at Canadian Wise Foods Inc., and North American Tea & Coffee Inc., Canada. Dr. Ali has also spent several years at Cargill Foods, Canada; Mitchells Fruit Farms, Pakistan; and CPC International, Pakistan, managing Production and Quality Assurance. Author of several Microbiology related publications and Food Technology Workshops, Dr. Ali is also a member of Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), Institute of Packaging Professionals, and Canadian Institute of Food Science and Technology.


Dr. Mujahid Masood
Dr. Mujahid Masood has over 25 years of research and specialized professional experience in Poultry Processing. As senior auditor at Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®) for the past 10 years, Dr. Masood oversees halal audits at production sites throughout North America. Using his specialization in poultry product flavor chemistry, poultry food safety, processing, distribution and utilization of poultry and egg, Dr. Masood supervises entire procedure and process of food production. The scope of this review includes monitoring equipment, cleanliness, sanitation, contamination, packaging, labeling, storage and even transportation. Dr. Masood also identifies and solves specific communication problems using halal technical presentations to educate the food industry. Dr. Masood’s illustrious career includes overseas teaching positions at the National Institute of Food Science and Technology, University of Agriculture; and Assistant Research Officer and Food Scientist at Ayub Agricultural Research Institute in Pakistan. He has authored and collaborated in several articles and papers in published in Poultry Science, Pakistan Journal of Medical Research, Journal of Food Processing and Preservation, as well as IFANCA’s own globally distributed Halal Digest. Dr. Masood holds special training in HACCP, and holds Food Science BSc. (Hons.) and MSc. (Hons.) from Pakistan’s University of Agriculture; and his Ph.D. in Food Science and Technology from Mississippi State University.


Dr. Farhat Quadri
Dr. Farhat Quadri is the Director of Community Services to Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®) since 2009. Besides serving as a liaison to all Civic Organizations, as well as Islamic Community Centers, Dr. Quadri conducts educational seminars and workshops on halal. He also responds to various queries from Muslim inmates and correctional institute authorities about halal food and the establishment of halal kitchens in prisons. Dr. Quadri’s career has dealt with laboratory sciences for over 30 years. Dr. Quadri holds a B.Sc. from India’s Marathwada University in Agricultural Sciences, as well as M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Food Sciences and Nutrition from Kansas State University. From 1975 to 2008, Dr. Quadri served as director/manager of Radiochemistry and Endocrinology Laboratories in three major hospitals in the Chicago area: Lutheran General, Michael Reese, and Cook County Hospital. Dr. Quadri has collaborated and contributed research to numerous publications, including: The Journal of Nuclear Medicine; Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention; American Journal of Clinical Oncology; Clinical Chemistry; Journal of the International Medical Association; International Journal of Radiation Oncology, Biology and Physics; and Nuclear Medicine: Principles and Practice.


Mr. Roger Othman
Roger M. Othman is an Executive Director of the Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®). Mr. Othman holds Bachelors of Science Degrees in Aerospace and Chemical Engineering from the University of Michigan. He has spent much of his career in the oil industry in domestic and foreign assignments in process operations; technical services; total quality management; and economic and strategic planning. Mr. Othman has served on the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee of the Mosque Foundation and the Board of Directors of IFANCA®. He also served as the first Managing Director of IFANCA, and helped establish the procedures and systems that helped evolve IFANCA into the organization it is today. In the area of publications, he served as the editor of the Islamic Perspectives newsletter; creator and editor of the Halal Consumer© magazine and the Halal Digest© e-newsletter, and has contributed numerous articles to each publication. In the area of halal certification, he has conducted halal inspections of client facilities and supervised the production of halal certified products. Mr. Othman has also been a presenter at several halal food conferences, including IFANCA Halal Food Conferences and the 2001 Halal Food Conference in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.




IFANCAIslamic Food and Nutrition Council of America

IFANCA to Address Fast Growing US Halal Food Market at Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) Annual Meeting and Food Expo 2010 in Chicago

Contact: Maria Omar
+1-773-283-3708 Ext: 222
m.omar@ifanca.org

(July 17, 2010 -- Chicago, IL...) The Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®) will be exhibiting their halal certification and information services from July 17, to 20, 2010, at the Institute of Food Technologists Annual Meeting and Food Expo 2010. IFANCA’s display booth, #5101, will offer free halal certification consultations to IFT Expo attendees for its entire duration.

In the past years, interest in the growing halal markets and halal certification has expanded tremendously. In the past 4 years, Datamonitor Group has noted that the number of global halal product launches has increased by 150 percent from 2005 to 2009.

IFANCA has also witnessed an increased interest in halal – both for global, as well as for the US halal food market. “The interest is higher than anything we have seen in the past 10 years for halal food ingredients.” says Dr. Chaudry, President of IFANCA. Dr. Chaudry estimates an 80 percent growth from halal certified ingredients and food products since 2005 for US and global based halal markets. This increased interest for US halal market ingredients and products may reflect the overall estimated $170 billion US dollar purchasing power of American-Muslims. Dr. Chaudry has estimated the American-Muslim purchasing strength for food items alone may well exceed $20 billion US dollars.

To address this growing interest in halal, IFANCA will be exhibiting its halal certification services, and giving out halal informational materials during the IFT Expo 2010. Its Food Technology team, at booth #5101, will share specific, halal technical information, and free halal consumer information for both food technology, as well as marketing professionals.

 

IFANCA

Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®), is one of the world’s leading and well respected not-for-profit halal-certification organizations. Featured in various media such as The Wall Street Journal, Prepared Foods, and CNN; IFANCA has been promoting halal for the past 28 years. IFANCA was recognized in the Best Halal Related Service Provider Award by the Halal Journal at World Halal Forum 2007. IFANCA-certified halal products are recognized by Indonesia (M.U.I), Malaysia (JAKIM), Singapore (M.U.I.S), U.A.E. and many other countries. For more information about IFANCA, visit www.ifanca.org.

 




IFANCAIslamic Food and Nutrition Council of America

IFANCA® to Organize Halal Education Session at National Restaurant Association (NRA) Show in Chicago

Contact: Maria Omar
+1-773-283-3708 Ext: 222
m.omar@ifanca.org

(May 22, 2010 -- Chicago, IL...) The Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®) and Med-Diet Laboratories, Inc., a specialty food distribution company, are co-sponsoring a halal education session on May 22nd at 10:00AM at the prestigious National Restaurant Association 2010 Show. IFANCA will also organize a display booth, #1255W, to offer consultations to the attendees at the NRA Show for the entire duration.

The education session, entitled Reach Over 9 Million Muslim-Americans Searching for Halal Meals, is designed to raise awareness in the American hospitality industry as to how it can better serve halal consumers. Speakers will share information about the potential of the American Halal Market. The session has been designed to demystify the concept of halal food and to educate food development, production, marketing, distribution and service professionals.

The NRA halal education panel will include Dr. Muhammad Munir Chaudry, President of IFANCA, and leading expert on halal food ingredients. Dr. Chaudry will outline key requirements for halal food service. The panel will also include Mr. Don Tymchuck, President of Med-Diet Laboratories, Inc. who will discuss the distribution channels for pre-cooked halal food items, meals and raw materials. Celebrity Chef, Mr. Mahmood Yousaf, will share his halal culinary experience with attendees. Chef Yousaf has several years of experience in managing large halal kitchens in cafeteria’s, hotels, and award-winning restaurants. Ms. Maggie Mendoza from Sheraton Hotels & Towers will offer insights into serving halal food in the mainstream hospitality industry. As Catering Sales Manager for weddings and large social events, Ms. Mendoza will present key tips on how to meet halal needs at conferences, weddings and banquets.

IFANCA is exhibiting its halal education services during the NRA show. Its Food Technology team, at booth #1255W, will share specific, halal technical information and how-to manuals, towards creating separate halal sections in food service kitchens.

 

IFANCA

Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®), is one of the world’s largest and well respected not-for-profit halal-certification agencies. Featured in various media such as The Wall Street Journal, Prepared Foods, and CNN; IFANCA has been promoting halal for the past 28 years. IFANCA was recognized in the Best Halal Related Service Provider Award by the Halal Journal at World Halal Forum 2007. IFANCA-certified halal products are sold in nearly every country of the world and cover all food industry categories.

For more information about IFANCA, www.ifanca.org.

 




IFANCAIslamic Food and Nutrition Council of America

"IFANCA brings Halal Talk to the Skies": IFANCA Discusses Growing US Halal Market on Sky Radio, Inc.

Contact: Maria Omar
+1-773-283-3708 Ext: 222
m.omar@ifanca.org

(March 8, 2010 -- Chicago, IL...) This March and April 2010, Dr. Chaudry, President of Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®) talks about the growing US halal market on Sky Radio Network. Nearly 20,000 US Airways international flights will air the interview of Dr. Chaudry, noted halal food consultant, and co-author of “Halal Food Production” where he shares what halal, a growing new food category, represents for the US economy. Sky Radio Network provides business, technology and health programming to some of the largest airlines in the world, including United, America, Delta, US Airways and Virgin America. This is the first time the network will feature a segment about halal and its growth in the USA. "The US food manufacturing and hospitality industry are missing opportunities to service a growing domestic halal market," says Dr. Chaudry. In his interview, Dr. Chaudry touches upon the requirements for halal certification, which includes the absence of pork and alcohol, among other qualifiers. Further, Dr. Chaudry also notes the burgeoning spending power of American Muslims estimated at around $170 billion US dollars.

The interview and transcript can be accessed on IFANCA’s homepage (www.ifanca.org), as well as Sky Radio Inc.’s official website (www.SkyRadioNet.com).

 

IFANCA

Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA®), is one of the world’s leading and well respected not-for-profit halal-certification agencies. Featured in various media such as The Wall Street Journal, Prepared Foods, and CNN; IFANCA has promoted halal for the past 28 years. IFANCA was recognized in the Best Halal Related Service Provider Award by the Halal Journal at World Halal Forum 2007. IFANCA-certified halal products are sold in nearly every country of the world and cover all food industry categories.

For more information about IFANCA, including locations throughout the world, visit www.ifanca.org.

 




IFANCAIslamic Food and Nutrition Council of America

Transcript of Sky Radio Interview (March & April 2010)

Presenter (Dennis Michael): The nutritional needs of a growing demographic are creating new categories in the food industry as demands for food prepared to halal standards. Our next guest is Dr. Muhammad Chaudry, president of the Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America. He joins us to talk about that. Dr. Chaudry welcome to the show.

Dr. Chaudry: Thank you.

Presenter (Dennis Michael): Let’s clarify before we get too far along for those who are unfamiliar with what is halal, and what is the growing demand for those products that meet that standard mean for our economy?

Dr. Chaudry: Halal is very simple. Its food that is allowed for Muslims and there are two main elements to that; and that is no pork allowed, and no alcohol allowed. There are some other qualifiers also.

Presenter (Dennis Michael): So, I gather it’s not terribly difficult for existing products to be certified to be halal standards. What’s required in representative cases?

Dr. Chaudry: For majority of the products, it’s looking at formulations and replacing the ingredients which do not meet our standards. For meat, it’s a little bit difficult where the animals actually have to be slaughtered by Muslims. Obviously, avoiding alcohol during cooking; offering a drink, all that can be avoided.

Presenter (Dennis Michael): Now let’s talk about the business aspect of this. What does the halal market represent in the present and the future of the US food economy?

Dr. Chaudry: There are no strict numbers but different estimations put the halal food budget at around $20 billion for 8 million US Muslims. And the total budget for Muslim population in USA is $170 billion US Dollars.

Presenter (Dennis Michael): Now if I understand correctly, a large number of large brand-name manufacturers in the US and Canada is already aboard with the halal standards. Who’s with you on this already?

Dr. Chaudry: Pretty much everybody who is exporting the products to South East Asia and Middle East, starting with Nestle, Kraft, Abbot Nutrition, ConAgra, and all the mid to small size companies.

Presenter (Dennis Michael): Well, Dr. Chaudry, thank you very much for joining us here on Sky Radio, and opening our eyes to a growing category.

Dr. Chaudry: Thank you for having me.

Presenter (Dennis Michael): Dr. Muhammad Munir Chaudry, the president of Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America. We reached him by phone from his office in Chicago and they’re on the web: www.ifanca.org.