Various religious affiliations worldwide provide strictly defined food guidelines for their parishioners. As highlighted by Stuckrath (2019), Christianity involves periods of fastening with meat, fish, egg, dairy, and alcohol avoided, while Hinduism generally restricts the consumption of meat and eggs (Patience, 2019). As followed by Stuckrath (2019), Judaists are expected to consume only kosher food, which meets uphold standards of preparation from harvest to slaughter. Similar to Judaists’, Muslims’ religious dietary traditions dictate the necessity of eating halal food to abstain from sin (Stuckrath, 2019). Since the scope of this project allows us to explore in detail the history of only one religious dietary restriction, the focus will be on halal meat. A brief examination of the religious significance, geographical prevalence, and current role of halal meat suggests that despite its historical value, this food poses much controversy to Islam practitioners now.
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Ultimately, the consumption of halal meat remains a highly significant religious practice for Muslims around the globe. Though first appeared solely as a religious dietary restriction, halal food now constitutes a critical part of the food industry, attracting both Muslim and non-Muslim parishioners. While for Islam practitioners, halal meat is a lawful, pure food, consumption of which may save them from sin, buyers of other religions appreciate the most the humane principle behind the animal slaughter. For some people, however, the sales of halal food in North America, an area in which the process of harvesting and slaughtering the animals, according to Islamic standards, is relatively new, raises controversial commentary. More specifically, Canadians advocate that halal meat spread into the non-Muslim world so deeply that it is now sold without being labeled as such, violating the consumers’ right for choosing the origin of their food.
- Patience, S. (2019). Religion and dietary choices. Web.
- Stuckrath, T. (2019). Religious dietary restrictions: Your essential quick reference guide. Web.