♦ Halal refers to anything that is considered permissible and lawful in the religion (this means that it has been approved by Allah). “Halal” includes the respective product being produced according to religious rituals, it refers to purity and cleanliness, and thus the product is tahir.
♦ Haram is what is forbidden, meaning everything Allah has strictly forbidden.
♦ Makruh describes what is disliked, something that Allah disapproves of although not completely. The trend is towards haram.
While many things are clearly halal or haram, there are some things which are not clear. Further information is needed to categorize them as halal or haram. Such items are often referred to as mashbooh, which means doubtful or questionable.
The most important aspects to be observed in the production of halal food are :
» Exclusive use of hahal raw materials and halal ingredients. This consideration also includes the production conditions (e.g. meat from animals slaughtered according to the basic law of shechita).
» No substance or equipment shall be used that is najis (ritually unclean).
» Prior to the start of production, the equipment and other tools must not be najis and therefore they have to undergo purification to bring them to a ritually clean condition.
» During the entire production process, no contamination with substances/objects is allowed that are haram or najis.
Certification bodies and certification companies can confirm that a company has available and adheres to the conditions needed for halal production.