The Kosher and Halal Food Laws

Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety (Impact Factor: 3.54). 06/2003; 2(3):111 - 127. DOI: 10.1111/j.1541-4337.2003.tb00018.x

ABSTRACT Knowledge of the kosher and halal dietary laws is important to the Jewish and Muslim populations who observe these laws and to food companies that wish to market to these populations and to interested consumers who do not observe these laws. The kosher dietary laws determine which foods are “fit or proper” for Jews and deal predominantly with 3 issues: allowed animals, the prohibition of blood, and the prohibition of mixing milk and meat. These laws are derived from the Torah and the oral law received by Moses on Mount Sinai (Talmud). Additional laws cover other areas such as grape products, cheese, baking, cooking, tithing, and foods that may not be eaten during the Jewish festival of Passover. Halal laws are derived from the Quran and the Hadith, the traditions of the prophet Muhammad. As with Kosher laws, there are specific allowed animals and a prohibition of the consumption of blood. Additionally, alcohol is prohibited.

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    ABSTRACT: North African countries have a rich tradition in food technology, and many traditional foods of animal or plant origin are still widely consumed and highly appreciated. In fact, these foods play an important role in the economy and food security in these countries. Yet, they are still mainly prepared at the household level under poor sanitary conditions and marketed through informal routes. They thus remain beyond any official control for their compliance to national regulatory standards. Therefore, their consumption is anticipated to put the public health at risk, although such risk has never been estimated on a scientific basis due to the lack of consumption patterns, epidemiological data, and appropriate surveillance programs. The scarcity of scientific studies on the incidence of hazards in this specific category of foods adds to the difficulties in conducting scientifically sound risk assessment or profiling studies. This review provides a brief description of technologies of the most popular traditional foods of animal and plant origin in North Africa and discusses the potential microbiological risks associated with their consumption and the food safety challenges that they raise. The review also aims to draw the attention of stakeholders including decision makers in North African countries to the imperious need to assess or profile the health risks associated with their consumption, and consequently, take the necessary measures to reduce such risks. A tentative risk profiling of selected traditional North African foods is presented using as a template the “risk categorization model for food retail/food service establishments” developed by Health Canada.
    Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety 01/2013; 12(1). · 3.54 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: There are many slaughter procedures that religions and cultures use around the world. The two that are commercially relevant are the halal and kosher methods practiced by Muslims and Jews respectively. The global trade in red meat and poultry produced using these two methods is substantial, thus the importance of the quality of the meat produced using the methods. Halal and kosher slaughter per se should not affect meat quality more than their industrial equivalents, however, some of their associated pre- and post-slaughter processes do. For instance, the slow decline in blood pressure following a halal pre-slaughter head-only stun and neck cut causes blood splash (ecchymosis) in a range of muscles and organs of slaughtered livestock. Other quality concerns include bruising, hemorrhages, skin discoloration and broken bones particularly in poultry. In addition to these conventional quality issues, the "spiritual quality" of the meat can also be affected when the halal and kosher religious requirements are not fully met during the slaughter process. The nature, causes, importance and mitigations of these and other quality issues related to halal and kosher slaughtering and meat production using these methods are the subjects of this review.
    Meat Science 06/2014; · 2.23 Impact Factor


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