Halal Consumer Magazine
I seek refuge in God from the evil Satan. In the Name of God, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful. “Read! In the Name of your LORD WHO has created (all that exists).” With this simple yet powerful revelation, the LORD has commanded HIS Messenger, Muhammad, may peace and blessings be upon him, and all of humanity to read and learn; to educate themselves in the truth of the world and in the sciences and all other areas of knowledge. The teacher plays a critical role in society. He/She guides open minds to find solutions to problems, to understanding difficult concepts and to learning the truth.
Anyone possessing some knowledge should try to pass that knowledge on to someone else. The Prophet, may peace and blessings be upon him, exhorted his Companions to pass on the knowledge they gain from him, even if it is only one piece of information. In those days, knowledge was generally passed on verbally and people memorized much of it and were able to remember it and teach their children and friends. Advances in communication have made it much easier to gain and distribute knowledge. Unfortunately, it has made it easy to distribute misinformation. Perhaps the electronic age places a greater burden on the knowledge seeker to be certain the information they receive is correct.
At IFANCA we strive to do our part in passing on the knowledge and experience we have gained over many years of implementing Halal supervision. The task is multifold.
We address questions from consumers concerning Halal and haram. While the basics of Halal are simple, the modem technology has complicated things by mixing ingredients from the entire realm of edible items into the food products. Through email, phone conversations, publications and conferences, we respond to individual questions and concerns.
We work with the food product producers to help them understand the concept of Halal and how to implement it in their production processes. Along with that, we must provide an insight into Islam and the needs of Muslims so they can produce acceptable Halal certified products and market them to a growing and adherent world. Again, personal consultations, conferences and publications have been the best vehicles for transferring the knowledge about Halal.
We work with educators, students and educational institutions to equip them with the information they need to graduate knowledgeable students and to provide nutritional Halal meals to those who need or want them. We regularly receive calls from school administrators asking how they can satisfy the needs of their Halal consuming students.
We also work with the media and the regulators to provide accurate information on the issues in question, advising on regulations and consulting on legislation.
The work is very demanding and very rewarding. You sometimes don’t know how much you have helped anyone but you often receive thanks for your information and advice. Just recently we received a thank you note from surfer looking for information on ‘chocolate liquor’. The surfer was not looking for Halal information but wanted to know if it contained any alcohol. He must have used a search engine and was happy to see the answer on the IFANCA website. He was kind enough to let us know we were of help to him.
Of course, imparting knowledge means having to have it and that pushes us to strive hard to acquire it so we can pass it on. We offer a hearty thank you to our teachers, our Islamic Scholars, our professors and everyone who has taken the time to help us along the way so we could tum around and pass on some of that information to others. May God reward you.