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.
WALL STREET JOURNAL PROFILES INCREASING OPPORTUNITIES IN HALAL FOOD INDUSTRY
In "Halal Meets Kosher in Health-Food Aisle", published May 5th in the Wall Street Journal, reporter Barry Newman writes about the race "toward breakthroughs in frozen pepperoni pizza."
Dr. Muhammad Munir Chaudry, President of IFANCA, says in the interview that perhaps two reasons mainstream U.S. marketers haven't tapped into the Halal foods market are: fear of backlash from Islamophobes and lack of uniform standards. Further, according to the report, even those supermarkets that may want to stock Halal foods on their shelves may not know where to look for them. "There are no major (US) distributors," says a buyer for Ralphs, Kroger Company's California Chain.
In Europe, however, the scenario is significantly different. In a bid to woo French Muslims the Carrefour Group, a supermarket chain, sold whole sheep in its parking lot for Eid al-Fitr in 2005. IFANCA certifies 2000 products for markets in Islamic countries.
HALAL: A BADGE OF QUALITY FOR BOTH FOOD AND BUSINESS PRACTICES, REPORTS BBC
According to a BBC May 8 report, Malaysia's Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi told delegates at the first World Halal Forum that Halal should be a badge of quality, not just for food but for good business practices as well. Calling the growing Halal industry an opportunity for both Muslims and non-Muslims, he said, "Halal represents just and fair business transactions as well as caring for animals and the environment. Halal embodies social justice and welfare as well as protection of the poor and the weak."
Commercial realities were the focus of the three-day forum. Attendees were urged to establish global, uniform standards for food and non-food items while meeting Islamic standards. Event organizer, Mr. Abdal Hamid Evans, said the global Halal market is potentially worth as much as $500 bn per year and that the "farm-to-fork nature of halal requires a forum where all of the different elements can get together, where issues can be resolved."
MALAYSIA WOOS CANADIAN FIRMS TO COLLABORATE IN FAST-GROWING HALAL FOOD INDUSTRY
TORONTO-- With a major portion of their nation's farm income derived from livestock, Canadian firms can form joint ventures to develop Malaysia's fast-growing halal food industry, says Ms. Datuk Seri Rafidah Aziz, Minister of International Trade and Industry in Malaysia.
Ms. Aziz told some 300 participants at a seminar here that with Malaysia poised to be Halal hub, "it will be good if we can source some raw materials we do not have from Canada." According to Ms. Aziz, "Raw materials from Canada can be used to produce Halal products and certify them as Halal by using our standards and then market it globally from Malaysia." She also explained that the process of producing Halal products does not stop at slaughtering livestock according to Islamic procedures but includes hygienic practices and products used in the process of producing the goods and services.
Australia and New Zealand were two main suppliers of Halal beef for Malaysia.
Rafidah was leading a trade and investment mission to Canada comprising 49 representatives from the private sector, MITI, Malaysia Industrial Development Authority, Malaysia External Trade Development Corp, the state governments of Penang, Perak, Kedah, Sabah and Selangor as well as Multimedia Development Corp Malaysia.
On July 8, 2002 California became the fifth state to enact Halal regulations when the then Governor Gray Davis signed the Halal Food Bill (AB1828) into law. Muslim Californians felt elated as they felt that finally the Halal products that they buy will be under governmental regulation and that they won't be defrauded by cheaters anymore. Four years after the law was enacted it appears that there is very little regulation of the Halal meat industry with virtually no fines levied on those who violate the law. Worse the governmental agencies are not even sure who is tasked with monitoring and regulation.
The bill provides that a person who, with intent to defraud, sells any meat or meat preparations falsely representing them to be halal or prepared in compliance with Islamic religious requirements, or who fails to indicate that both Halal and nonhalal meat is for sale in the same place of business, is punishable by a fine of not less than $100 nor more than $600, or imprisonment in a county jail for not less than 30 days nor more than 90 days, or by both fine and imprisonment.
The law, however, does not provide details as to which governmental agency is responsible for its enforcement and hence this ambiguity. When contacted, California's Department of Consumer Affairs replied by saying that the issue falls outside of its regulatory authority. Instead it directed us to the Department of Food and Agriculture. "General issues related to food labelling and enforcement of legislation related to food issues such as the Halal Act may be addressed through the California Department of Food and Agriculture’s Division of Measurement Standards. The State level has responsibility for measurement standards, regulations for advertising, quantity, and labelling to list just a few. Enforcement of regulations is through the Department of Food and Agriculture's County Weights and Measures Offices at the county level..." read the email from the DCA.
When contacted Mr. Steve Lyle, Director of Public Affairs, California Department of Food and Agriculture, said his department has nothing to do with this matter. "This agency does not have jurisdiction in this matter. Please contact the state Department of Consumer Affairs, the Department of Health Services, or local government agencies that regulate retail food facilities, Lyle wrote in an email."
Queries to other departments as well as an email to the Governor's office received no response. This running from pillar to post raises some serious questions about the seriousness with which the law was enacted. Was the Halal Food Bill (AB 1828) just a suave exercise on the part of the elected representatives or was it a result of genuine concerns about protecting Halal consumers? The government of California can begin answering this question by specifically naming the agency which is responsible for its enforcement.
Did you know that less than one percent of all the water on earth is available or clean enough to drink? The rest is salty or frozen. We tend to take water so much for granted when the fact is we couldn’t survive without it. Drinking water directly impacts health. If you think feeling thirsty is the signal you need, think again. Parched lips mean you're already dehydrated.
TIRED? STRESSED OUT? GET A DRINK!
Feeling washed out and tired? Drink more water. When dehydrated, your blood is literally thicker and the body has to work harder to circulate it. The brain ends up less active, making it harder to concentrate, leaving you feeling fatigued. Other symptoms of dehydration include dry skin, muscle cramps, urine that is golden or has a strong odor.
WATER - THE MIRACLE DRUG?
The May 1, 2002 American Journal of Epidemiology reports that a six-year study of people aged 38-100, showed that women who drank more than five glasses of water a day were 41 percent less likely to die from a heart attack during the study period than those who drank less than two glasses. The protective effect of water was even greater in men.
A Mayo Clinic study showed that women who drank more than five glasses of water a day had a 45 percent lower risk of colon cancer than those who drank two or fewer glasses a day. Other studies show that the risk of bladder cancer is reduced by 50%. Preliminary research also shows that the same five glasses significantly ease back and joint pain for up to 80% of sufferers.
Water is an ally against kidney stones as it dissolves calcium in the urine and reduces the risk of stone formation.
DO WE ALL NEED 8 GLASSES?
Don’t weight and height matter? Some dieticians recommend a third of our weight (in pounds) as the right amount of water to consume.
WHEN HUNGRY, DRINK WATER
According to Doctor F. Batmanghelidj MD, author of "Your Body's Many Cries for Water", when you're feeling hungry, it's your body asking for water – not food. And yes, water can be found in cucumbers, melons and other fruits too. Milk or juice can be substituted as well. When we're dehydrated, fat cells aren't easily metabolized making weight loss harder.
Drinking 2-3 glasses of water a day are recommended one to two hours before you exercise. During the workout, the American College of Sports Medicine suggests about 10 ounces of fluid for every 10 to 20 minutes of exercise.
Water helps to build muscle. According to sources, if your body is dehydrated, you're not going to have a very productive weight lifting session. Water also helps lubricate the joints and is a key ingredient in the makeup of synovial fluid, the lubricating fluid between your joints. Anyone lifting weights knows how important paying attention to their joints is.
HOW TO GET 8 GLASSES OF WATER A DAY
Fill up a jug with water and keep it close by most of the time. Keeping it in sight is a reminder in itself.
Add a slice of lemon to your water to keep it zesty.
Turn water to lemonade if your children refuse to drink water alone.
Keep a bottle of water by your bedside at night.
IFANCA has certified the following bottled water, to be doubt free of questionable filter aids and processing chemicals:
Tea is an aromatic stimulant, containing various polyphenols, antioxidants, essential oils and caffeine. The tea plant itself is Camellia sinensis, a native of Southeast Asia. Tea is drunk by about half of the world's population around the globe. China, India, Indonesia, Kenya and Sri Lanka are the main producers of traditional black tea. Leaf buds and young leaves, called tips, are used in making tea, the age of the leaves determining the taste and name of the particular commercial variety.
Benefits of Tea
In the U.S., 2.25 billion gallons of tea is drunk in one form or another, whether hot, iced, flavored or spiced. Recent research suggests drinking tea may help prevent everything from cavities to Parkinson's disease. Below are some of the conditions:
Arthritis: Research suggests that older women who drink tea are 60% less likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis.
Bone density: Drinking tea regularly may produce stronger bones, leading to higher bone mineral density in their spines.
Cancer: Green tea extracts were found to inhibit growth of bladder cancer cells in the lab, while other studies suggest that drinking green tea offers protection against developing stomach and esophageal cancers.
Flu: You may be able to boost your fight against flu with black tea. In a recent study, people who gargled with a black tea extract solution twice a day showed a higher immunity to the flu virus.
Heart Disease: A recent study suggested that drinking more than two cups a day of tea decreases the risk of death following a heart attack by 44%. Tea is a rich source of flavonoids and high dietary intake is associated with reduced risk of fatal heart attacks.
High Blood Pressure: Drinking a half cup of green or oolong tea per day reduced a person's risk of high blood pressure by almost 50%.
Oral Health: Rinsing with black tea may prevent cavities and gum disease.
The Immune System: Boosts the body's defenses against many illnesses.
How Is Tea Responsible For Your Health?
The chemical, flavonoids, in tea are natural antioxidants that rid the body of molecules called free radicals, which are by-products of damage done to the body by pollution and the natural aging process. Hibiscus teas contain a number of different antioxidants that may help protect against cell damaging free radicals. You can find hibiscus in such teas as sour tea, red zinger tea and sorrel tea.
Black, Green or Herbal?
Black, green and oolong teas are made from the same plant mentioned above, but differ in their methods of preparation. All tea leaves are withered, rolled and air dried, but black teas go through a fermentation step. Oolong teas are partially fermented, green tea is dried but not fermented; herbal teas are derived from leaves, bark, roots, seeds and flowers of several other plants.
Other Benefits of Tea
Our grandmother used to say to dip your finger in tea if you have a cut on your finger. It is actually the tannic acid in tea that has the anti-inflammatory properties and germicidal properties as well.
Hot Brewed Tea from IFANCA Certified China Mist Tea Co - 1 cup
Delicious Amaretto flavor from IFANCA Certified Monin Co - 2 oz.
Rich's Whipped Cream- Chilled, and used to one's own extent
Pour hot China Mist tea into a café glass, using a spoon in the glass to prevent from cracking. Add delicious Monin Amaretto flavor, but do not stir. Finally, top with Rich's chilled whipped cream and serve.
IFANCA is certifying these companies and their products below: