February 26, 2011
THE government is determined to help Filipino companies seize a wider chunk of the $3 trillion global halal market.
Department of Science and Technology (DOST)-Soccksargen Director Dr. Haja Sittie Shayma P. HR Laidan confirmed the construction of a Halal facility in South Central Mindanao bigger than the laboratory now operating in Cotabato City.
Once completed, the new laboratory will be named the Philippine National Halal Laboratory whose purposes are to protect the integrity of locally-made Halal products and reinforce the credibility of certifying bodies and local Halal-product manufacturers.
“We cannot assure that a particular product is halal using only eyes or senses,” Laidan said. “Only through testing and analyses in our halal laboratory can we guarantee that products claimed as halal are what they claim to be without contamination or adulteration.”
The global halal market is worth trillions in US dollars, with Halal food alone amounts to $680 billion annually or 76 percent of the world’s food trade.
For now, the laboratory based at the DOST Compound in Cotabato City will cater to corporations or cooperatives seeking Halal certification such as food and beverage manufacturers and producers, food service outlets, caterers, food distributors and suppliers, food importers and exporters, pharmaceutical manufacturers and medical device manufacturers.
“This is the only existing halal laboratory in the country devoted to serving local and international clients,” Laidan said. “Its range of services spans the entire supply chain of halal food and selected non-food.”
While DOST handles the technical aspect of validating compliance of products and services to halal requirements, the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF) will take care of the religious aspect of validation.
The laboratory offers profiling of fatty acids of animals and plants, as well as DNA analysis of foods and other processed products, gelatin content analysis of milk and other dairy products.
It likewise tests genetically modified organisms (GMOs), analyze alcohol content of beverages and other related products and conduct qualitative detection of haram in meat products, lard in bakery products and in edible oils.