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I have a question for you regarding Halal food. I currently study in Canada and therefore food is an issue that crosses me everyday.

Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,

As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh.  (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)

 

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Asalam Walikum Burhan bhai


I have a question for you regarding Halal food. I currently study in Canada and therefore food is an issue that crosses me everyday. There are a fair number of muslims here who make the distinction between zabiha meat and Halal meat. Zabiha meat is that which is slaughtered and prepared strictly according to sharia. Halal meat is a broader term that refers to meat slaughtered by the ahlal-KItab. Since Canada is an ahlal kitab country, is their meat halal to consume? I`ve researched their slaughter procedure online, and apparently they shock the animal first, and then cut its jugular vein and cartoid artery. The animal is then left to bleed to death, after which, it is cleaned and packaged. This procedure is for cattle.

 

Thus given this procedure, is non zabiha meat in canada considered halal? Some Muslims argue that you never know who the slaughterer is, it may be a non ahlal kitab person such as a Hindu, Wiccan or Sikh.


Should we consider that, or assume that if you cannot prove who the slaughter is, one should assume him to be a christian since canada is an ahlal kitab country?


Jazak-Allah-Kheir for your time Burhan bhai 

 

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Answer:

 

Food in Canada

In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol, no person, no grave, no prophet, no imam, no dai, nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.

 

Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 5 Surah Maidah verse 5:

All the good and pure things have today been made halaal for you; the food of the people of the Book (Jews and Christians) is halaal for you, and your food for them.


 

It is evident from the above aayah of the Holy Quran that the food of the People of the Book (Jews and the Christians) is halaal for the believers. If a few conditions (which are listed below) can be met, then the meat served in a Christian (or Jewish nation) like the USA, Canada, or England can be termed halaal.

 

1.      The animal itself should be halaal in Shariah. (Even if a muslim (Allah forbid) were to slaughter swine, it will not make it halaal!!).

2.      The one who slaughters the animal must either be a Muslim, or a Jew or a Christian. If any other person slaughters the animal, it will not be considered halaal.

3.      The animal has to be slaughtered and the blood should be oozed out naturally. It does not matter if the animal is slaughtered by hand or by a machine, from the front of the neck or from the back. What is important is that the veins must be cut to allow the blood to be oozed out of the body.

4.      The animal should have been alive at the time of slaughter. It is a routine in most slaughterhouses in the Western countries, that they electrocute or sting the animal with an electric shock, and then slaughter the animal. That is fine, as long as we one is satisfied that the electric shock did not kill the animal before its slaughter! If the animal was dead before it was slaughtered, it does not matter who slaughters the animal, that meat would be forbidden for the believers.

5.      The condition that Allahs name has to be pronounced is not a condition for the People of the Book, as long as nobody elses name is pronounced. If anybody elses name other than Allah is pronounced at the time of slaughter, it does not matter even if (Allah forbid) a muslim slaughters the animal, that meat would be considered haraam for the believers.

 

Your Question: Thus given this procedure, is non zabiha meat in canada considered halal? Some Muslims argue that you never know who the slaughterer is, it may be a non ahlal kitab person such as a Hindu, Wiccan or Sikh.

If one has any reason to believe that the one who did the slaughter of the animal was any other than a Muslim or from amongst the People of the Book, then one who sincerely believes in Allah and the Last Day should fear Allah and abstain from consuming such food.

 

Your Question: Should we consider that, or assume that if you cannot prove who the slaughter is, one should assume him to be a christian since canada is an ahlal kitab country?

Because countries like the USA, Canada, England, Germany, etc. are predominantly Christian nations, the chances that the one who slaughtered the animal was amongst the People of the Book are much higher; but nevertheless there is always a doubt that the one who slaughtered the animal might have been a non-muslim, non-Christian, or a non-Jew.

 

Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 1.49 Narrated by An Numan bin Bashir

I heard Allah's Messenger (saws) saying, 'Both lawful (halaal) and unlawful (haraam) things are evident, but in between them there are doubtful (suspicious) things and most of the people have no knowledge about them. So whoever saves himself from these suspicious things saves his religion and his honor. And whoever indulges in these suspicious things is like a shepherd who grazes (his animals) near the Hima (private pasture) of someone else and at any moment he is liable to get in it. O believers! Beware! Every king has a Hima and the Hima of Allah on the earth is His illegal (forbidden) things.

 

Beloved Brother in Islam, whenever one has a valid or genuine doubt or suspicion, especially in regards to its permissibility/impermissibility in Islam, the guidance of the Messenger of Allah (saws) is to err on the side of caution and abstain from it, for the Messenger of Allah (saws) said that whoever abstains from indulging in what is doubtful saves his religion and his honor.

 

Such is the state of affairs of slaughter in Western or Christian nations that one can neither say with conviction that all the food is halaal for the believers; nor can one say with conviction that the food is haraam. Thus in our humble opinion, it would be best, safest, purest, and closest to piety if the believers who sincerely believe in Allah and the Last Day abstain from the doubtful and consume only that food which they are absolutely convinced is halaal. And Allah Alone Knows Best.

 

Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allahs Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me alone. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.

 

Your brother and well wisher in Islam,

 

 

Burhan

 


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