Spotlight on Maple Lodge Farms
Halal Consumer Magazine
When consumers think about “halal,” meat is often the first item to come to mind. While “halal” relates to much more than that, finding certified halal meat products is not always an easy feat. In Canada, look no further than IFANCA halal-certified Maple Lodge Farms, the first company there to offer halal products on a large scale to Canadian Muslims.
Maple Lodge Farms has been producing a wide array of halal meat products since the company’s birth in 1990. But, the switch to IFANCA as its certifier came in 2013. According to Latif Mirza, manager of halal relations, “Maple Lodge Farms [chose] IFANCA as its certifier due to its credibility and the acceptance of its certification in more than 50 countries around the world. IFANCA has the resources and system of supervision necessary to ensure that our products are 100% halal.”
IFANCA takes its certification process very seriously, making the change in certifiers no simple feat. Mirza says, “Becoming certified by IFANCA/IFANCC [Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of Canada] was a lengthy process, which included several inspection visits, review of our ingredients and packaging materials, confirmation of the halal certification of our suppliers, and intensive education on the halal process and its sensitivities.” He continues, “In addition to regular inspections, IFANCC also conducts refresher courses for our halal staff.”
Why get halal certified to begin with? Trust. “Supervision of our process by a halal-certifying body instills trust in our consumers that we are producing halal products in strict accordance with Islamic law,” tells Mirza. “It gives our consumers confidence that they are consuming authentically halal products.” Mirza also confirms that IFANCA’s certification has further boosted the credibility of their halal claims, in turn helping the Zabiha Halal brand continue its growth in the Canadian market.
From lunch meat and hot dogs to frozen chicken wings and fresh chicken breasts, all of Maple Lodge Farms’ Zabiha Halal products are certified halal and carry IFANCA’s Crescent-M symbol as well as IFANCC’s halal symbol. These products are available in all major grocery stores and supermarkets throughout Canada in addition to many ethnic food stores across the country. Due to high domestic demand, Zabiha Halal is not available in markets outside of Canada at this time.
As a pioneer of Canada’s halal industry, Mirza says Maple Lodge Farms “strives to be a leader not only in product quality but also in product innovation.” Their New Product Development department “continuously seeks opportunities to launch new products and offerings,” as evidenced by the growth of their product line year after year. Mirza informs, “We continually monitor market trends and are committed to satisfying our consumers’ ever-changing tastes.”
In addition to catering to consumers’ taste buds, Maple Lodge Farms is also committed to maintaining close ties with the Muslim community through supporting and participating in a variety of events including family programs in mosques, social programs supporting seniors, and sports and educational activities for youth. They also stay connected to the community via their website, their Facebook page, and a monthly newsletter.
During Ramadan and the Eid holidays, Maple Lodge Farms steps up their community support game by running contests for consumers and sponsoring and participating in festivals celebrating Eid, food, and the Muslim community, like Muslim Association of Canada’s Eid Festival held this past Eid-ul-Fitr and MuslimFest Mississauga—celebrating the best in Muslim art, entertainment, and culture—held this past August. “Additionally,” Mirza says, “we support a number of organizations and initiatives within our community aimed at raising funds for charity and giving back to those less fortunate than us—particularly during Ramadan.”
If you are currently one of our neighbors to the north, check out the Maple Lodge Farms Zabiha Halal product line and let us know which one is your favorite.
Got a question?
Toll Free Canada Only: 1-888-664-4444
Toll Free US Only: 1-800-463-3548
Like on Facebook: www.facebook.com/zabihahalal