By Shane McGinley
Four day event will aim to agree on a definition for halal food and improve quality standards
Saudi Arabia will today host the world’s first ever international conference on halal food, in a bid to clearly define the sector and improve production and distribution quality standards.
Gathering scientific and religious scholars from over 20 countries, this is the first time such a global event has been staged.
With around 1.8bn people around the world consuming halal food, with a market is valued at SR2 trillion ($533bn), Mohammed Al-Kanhal, chairman of the Saudi Food and Drug Authority (SFDA), said the conference aims to clarify the concept of halal food and its requirements from an Islamic perspective.
"Besides boosting public and private sector cooperation in the relevant food industry at national, regional and global levels, it would also serve as an ideal platform for exchange of experience between countries in the field of supervision and control of halal food," Al-Kanhal told reporters on Saturday.
Ibrahim Al-Mohizea, vice president of SFDA for the food sector, said the event also aims to improve the global halal food sector by establishing uniform quality checks and regulations to govern the industry.
Topics to be discussed at the four-day conference include genetically modified food, lawfulness of food additives, analysis methods of halal food, control of halal food, its standards, certification and countries’ experiences in halal food control, Arab News reported.