halal food has been in spotlight among Thai people. Not only that the
Thai Muslims who are a large group of halal food consumers, but the
halal food producers and exporters should also pay a close attention to
and comply with the halal food producing process according to the
Islamic laws and Regulations of the Central Islamic Committee of
Thailand regarding the Halal Products Standard Certification B.E 2544
and its second issue B.E 2545, where an examination and certification
from the Central Islamic Committee of Thailand or the provincial Islamic
committee must also be completed accordingly. If the applicant wishes
to use the “Halal Food Certification Mark”, a permission from the
Central Islamic Committee of Thailand must firstly be given (Section 7, 8
of the aforementioned Regulations).
Considering the facts that Thailand is an important food producer for the global market and there are an approximate 2,000 million Halal food consumers worldwide, Halal Food is, as a result, an important market channel which Thailand should pay a close attention to increase a market segmentation.
The current government has launched an industrial promotion policy for the export of Halal food and ardently implement it both in terms of raw material development, producer promotion, market search, and the improvement of halal food certification standard to earn trust among foreign and Thai consumers. The certification and authorization authority for the halal food certification mark is the sole responsibility of the Islamic organ. Therefore, it is a tri-party cooperation namely, Muslim consumers, producers, and the government in the following aspects:
- Muslims can have hygienic halal food that is complied with Islamic laws, contained no haram and any intoxicants;
- Producers can gain business benefits while duly complying with Islamic halal food producing process and Regulations of the Central Islamic Committee of Thailand regarding the Halal Products Standard Certification as well as maintain food standard according to the Halal Food Standard;
country can develop its economy by way of government industrial
promotion policy for halal food in terms of raw material development,
producer promotion, market search, and the improvement of certification
standard of “Halal food” by Islamic organization in order to export
halal food to global market.
Halal food standard is an integrated standard system where the process from its start to its end through “production chain” must be “halal”, or lawful according to Islamic laws, free from “haram”, or intoxicants according to Islamic laws namely, raw materials, ingredients, addictive, contaminants, etc., to ensure hygienic, nutritious and body-benefited food and comply with GMP, HACCP, and ISO standards.
Strong points of Thai halal food industrial:
- Various raw materials and ingredients, meets food quality standards and complies with Islamic laws regarding halal food. Such advantages can be testified by the fact that many Islamic countries import raw materials from Thailand for their food processing, domestic consumptions, and re-exportation to third-party countries. Examples of countries that import raw materials from Thailand are Malaysia, Indonesia with imported goods such as tapioca starch, sugar, fresh chicken meat, and etc.;
- Strong halal food producers: Thailand food products has recently been certified by Codex standards. As a result, the development of halal food production is not difficult for Thai producers because such standards are not largely different from general food standards. There only requires some additional specific details for the food producers;
- Strong and unified Islamic administrative body to issue halal food certificates: namely, the Central Islamic Council of Thailand (CICOT) including 36 Islamic Committees of Province. Official authority, educational institutes provide academic supports to ensure standard halal food production process;
- Close support from the government: several governments have seen the importance of halal food business and launched many supportive packages continuously. The recent government led by Mr. Prayut Chan-O-Cha has implemented halal food promotion policy to drive the country’s economy by setting up the National Committee for the Promotion and Development of Halal Business and Products. The Committee has made a 5 Year-Term Strategy for the Promotion and Development of Halal Business and Products (from B. E2559-2563), which is primarily based on the religious principles for the development of halal food industry to ensure that it complies with the slogan “Religion Approved and Science Approved”. The strategy also adopts integrated work guidelines consisting of religious principles, market production, examination, and making Thailand’s halal food standard.
Food Institute is an organ within the Ministry of Industry responsible
for the promotion of food industry in Thailand. Halal food industry is
one of the business which we has promoted to be one of the economic
drive for the country.
As per the work guidelines, we are not alone when executing tasks. We stress on the need to cooperate with relevant authorities both government, business and educational sectors.