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.
According to Islam, even a smile is a form of charity (sadaqa). Our smiles make first impressions or light up a room and while our mouth is one of our most apparent features, what's inside it is often neglected. Maintaining good oral hygiene is a significant part of the Islamic faith and contributes to our over all well-being. IFANCA certifies several personal care products pertaining to oral hygiene.
Most people avoid seeing a dentist until they have a toothache. However, routine dental check-ups are necessary to maintain good dental hygiene. The dentist should be visited at least every six months. Most dental insurance companies cover the cost of routine dental visits at 100%. If you do not have dental insurance coverage, most dentists offer discount plans. A basic dental exam and cleaning with x-rays costs an average of $100 without insurance. That is a small investment to increase the longevity, health and beauty of our smiles. Tooth decay and gum disease are common oral health issues. If proper brushing and flossing are not practiced on a daily basis, plaque can build-up on our teeth and eventually cause gingivitis and gum disease. Diabetes and heart patients need to be extra cautious in preventing periodontal gum disease. There is a possibility that the inflammation caused by periodontal disease increases plaque build-up in the heart, which may contribute to swelling of the arteries 1. Also, people with poor blood sugar control get gum disease more often and more severely, and they lose more teeth than people with good control 2.
As soon as a baby's first teeth come in, he/she should be introduced to the toothbrush. Children that are bottle-fed have higher risks of developing tooth decay and cavities especially at night. The milk remains in the mouth for long periods of time making a perfect habitat for cavities. Parents should encourage their children to brush and floss daily. It is just as beneficial to brush before going to bed as it is to brush at the start of the day. Kids can be taught best by the parents' example. Make it a family activity to brush and floss together everyday.
Our best example of maintaining good oral health is the sunnah of our Prophet Muhammad, salla ALLAHu alaihi wa sallam. He was very adamant about using the miswak frequently especially before every ablution. He even used the miswak as one of his last acts at the time of his death. He also avoided foods such as garlic and onions to maintain fresh breath before heading to the mosque to perform prayers. We should implement these habits in our lives as well. We can try to earn the pleasure of ALLAH, Subhanahu wa ta'ala, by perfecting our smiles and improving our overall oral healthcare.
IFANCA Halal-Certified Lang's Chocolates – Perfect Corporate Gift
IFANCA halal-certified Lang's Chocolates make perfect corporate gifts at Eid and during the upcoming Christmas season as businesses can offer them with their logos in chocolate or via silkscreening on chocolate. Alcohol is not used as a processing aid. Now also sold on Amazon.com, customers have posted rave reviews - "The chocolate cordial cups arrived well protected and were in perfect shape." And "Excellent company to do business with. I plan to shop with them again. The product was wonderful." Check out their website at www.langschocolates.com.
Cargill Better Beef Always Met IFANCA Halal Certification Standards
In response to rumors circulating in the USA and Canada as well as on the internet, the Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America (IFANCA) reiterates that Better Beef does meet IFANCA halal criteria and can be consumed without any doubt.
IFANCA has developed a very stringent and independently verifiable halal authentication system that has been approved by a team of Islamic scholars and scientists. This system is implemented in all IFANCA halal-certified plants. IFANCA's slaughter methods are as close as practically possible to the traditional Islamic method of slaughter, where at least three out of four vessels are precisely cut, while also meeting the Canadian food safety requirements.
All cattle are slaughtered by specially trained Muslim slaughter men, who are supervised by IFANCA inspectors. Any statements to the contrary are not true. To allegations that the vertical method of cut during the animal slaughter does not meet the Islamic criteria, IFANCA states, "First the cut at the Cargill/Better Beef plant is not a vertical cut. It is a modified horizontal cut. Second, the claim about the jurists being unanimous that vertical cuts are not acceptable, is baseless. There are several methods of slaughtering animals, generally practiced being cutting the throat to sever four (4) passages, trachea, esophagus, jugular veins and carotid arteries. There is disagreement among the scholars even with the required number of openings to be cut. According to Imam Abu Hanifa all four are required to be cut. (Badai Al Sanaih, 6/41). According to his student Imam Abu Yusuf only one of the two jugular veins are required to be cut besides that of throat and windpipe. (ibid). According to other scholars cutting only the throat and windpipe is enough. (Sharh Muhazzab, 9/84). According to Imam Malik the windpipe and the two jugular veins are required to be cut in order for the animal to be halal. (Sharh Al Sagheer, 2/154). According to another reference, the Hanafi School’s ruling is that at least three of the four openings should be cut. (Nasab ul Raya, 4/185-86). This requirement of cutting at least three passages as well as complete draining of blood are met at the Cargill/Better Beef plant."
"The slaughter men trained by IFANCA are especially instructed in cutting the required number of openings leaving no doubt about this method of halal slaughter. Hence Cargill/Better Beef is halal and zabiha, as has been certified for over 10 years by the Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America."
IFANCA Clients Abbott & Pfizer Make It To Working Mothers Top 10 & Top 100 Companies List, Respectively
In its October issue, Working Mother magazine once again featured IFANCA Client Abbott as one of the "Top 10" companies on the prestigious Working Mother 100 Best list honoring companies for providing a family-friendly workplace. This is the fifth time that Abbott has been named one of the "Top 10" companies, and the ninth consecutive year that Abbott has been on to the broader 100 Best list. Pfizer Inc, also an IFANCA client, has been named among the 2009 Working Mother 100 Best Companies for its steadfast commitment to family-friendly benefits.
For a list of IFANCA halal-certified products for both companies, visit www.ifanca.org.
Mead Johnson Now Using Green Technology To Power Facility
Mead Johnson & Company, whose products for Asia are certified as halal by IFANCA, has adopted green technology with its choice to use landfill gas to meet a significant portion of its energy needs at the company's manufacturing facility in Evansville, Ind. Launched in June 2009, this project is the first of its kind for Mead Johnson and in the city of Evansville, and uses a "green" technology that has been proven safe and reliable.
The project has an estimated capacity to reduce net carbon dioxide greenhouse gas emissions by 24,000 metric tons per year, which is equivalent to removing greenhouse gas emissions from 4,400 passenger vehicles annually.
For a list of IFANCA halal-certified products for both companies, visit www.ifanca.org.
The IFANCA halal-certified food company Nestle earns more profits with its halal products than with its range of organic products and has almost 75 halal certified units within its global chain of companies.
Casino, a German retail chain, last year unveiled "Wassila", an online site, which is dedicated to halal products. The supermarket itself offers more than 400 halal products, 3-4% of the total offerings.
Britain's Boots has launched a range of halal baby foods in 30 of its retail stores.
McDonald's in Malaysia, with their halal products, has been able to increase its sales by 30 percent in recent years.
False. Casino is a French Retail Chain with an internet site called Wassila.
Last month's big news pertained to France airing its first ever halal-food ad. This month, there's news that German and European suppliers have been stocking mainstream supermarket shelves, both in Germany and for export within and beyond Europe, with an ever increasing number of halal products. This is a sea change from only a few years ago when the term halal conjured up many misconceptions.
"However, those misconception are gradually being replaced by a healthy sense of appreciation as many supermarkets are trying to court Muslims with halal products", says Armin Bollig, a consumer behavior researcher who lives near Frankfurt.
"This little section you see in the main shopping hall of this supermarket will convey to you the change that is taking place in the behavior pattern of the German consumer who is today willing to accept food practices which were once frowned upon," maintains Bollig as he walks through a Frankfurt supermarket that also caters to Turks and other Muslims.
Non-Muslim consumers are expected to join the three million Muslim consumers in Germany to buoy an already growing market.
First Annual American Muslim Consumer Conference (AMCC) on October 31st, 2009
According to an article in Advertising Age, "In the coming years, the U.S. market will likely begin to recognize and court the $170 billion purchasing power of American Muslims." To herald that change, the first annual American Muslim Consumer Conference (AMCC) will take place on Saturday, October 31st, 2009 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Researchers, entrepreneurs, marketing and advertising executives from corporate America will convene to discuss and explore the rapidly growing and untapped American Muslim Consumer: scope, trends and opportunities.
American Muslim consumers are estimated at 6-8 million with an annual spending in excess of $170 billion. This conference will provide American businesses and executives with useful insights, information and opportunities on how to access and attract the American Muslim market.
"Muslims want to be acknowledged in the mainstream media…Consider advertising in a Muslim media outlet, say Eid Mubarak or Ramadan Kareem during the holidays, the Muslim community will respond", said Mohammed Abdullah, director of the event.
Entrepreneur Magazine equated the buying power of American Muslims to roughly that of the state of Indiana. However, "reaching them requires an understanding of their culture, beliefs and preferences. Muslims are more interested than most Americans in seeing advertising that acknowledges them", it says. Muslims are a neglected market with huge potential for brands that are willing to connect with them online and offline.
Yellow No. 5 and all other numbered dyes (colors) are made from petrochemicals. In their pure form, they are halal. However, when used in food products they may be mixed with other doubtful or haram ingredients, such as gelatin. Sometimes non-dye ingredients may be added to dissolve or disperse the dye so that it can be applied in a drink, hard candy, or other food product. Finally, standardizing ingredients may also be added to help control the concentration of the dye being used. This causes some doubt about products containing these dyes.
To determine if the product containing the dye is halal, you should ask the manufacturer of the product what the other components of the dye are and from where they come. Of course, if the product containing the dye is certified halal, then it would be acceptable.