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HDC to expand international halal markets

KUALA LUMPUR, 28 Oct 2008: The Halal Industry Development Corporation (HDC) aims to penetrate deeper into international markets, especially the US, Europe and Japan.

Managing director and chief executive officer Datuk Seri Jamil Bidin said HDC had been aggressively focusing on capturing international markets since it assumed the responsibility for halal certification from the Islamic Development Department on 17 April 2008.

“To date, we have issued halal certifications for 527 companies in the Malaysian market and 16 companies in international markets,” he said at a news conference here today.

About 1,000 applications for halal certification have been received from the Malaysian market, he added.

HDC kicked off the two-day International Halal Certification Dialogue today, bringing together some of the world’s leading researchers and entrepreneurs in the global halal industry.

HDC vice-president of halal integrity Mariam Abdul Latif said that genetically-modified food was acceptable as being halal-compliant as long as it was sourced from halal-based materials.

According to Jamil, the main challenge facing the industry was obtaining halal-based raw materials.

He said the industry could benefit from halal-based certification which provided assurances in product quality and safety for the mass market, especially with the current issue of melamine-contaminated products.

HDC chairperson Tan Sri Dr Syed Jalaludin Syed Salim said there was potential for halal products worldwide.

He said even at its relatively early phase of development, some estimate the current size of the global halal market at US$2.1 trillion. — Bernama


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