Halal battlefront over Byron Bay's Anzac biscuits
A SOCIAL media storm has erupted after it was revealed on Facebook that Byron Bay Cookie Company produced Anzac biscuits were halal certified.
By 2pm yesterday more than 1300 people had posted on the company page, the majority expressing their disgust at the announcement that all the companies' products were halal certified.
But do you really know how mainstream halal certified products have become?
Chocolate maker Cadbury has 71 products on its website that are halal certified, ranging from Dairy Milk chocolate to Freddo Frogs and Red Tulip chocolates.
Nutri Grain, Nutella, Peters Ice Cream, Four' N Twenty pies and sausage rolls, Norco Foods Nimbin Cheese, Extra chewing gum, Milo, SPC tinned fruits, Mars bars, Bega cheese and Heinz jams, marmalades, relishes and sauces are all halal certified.
Products from the Northern Co-operative Meat Company's abattoir at Casino have been halal certified since 1995.
Supporters and producers of halal products claim the social media hysteria had been whipped up by the group Boycott Halal in Australia.
Boycott Halal in Australia identifies halal certified producers and products on its Facebook page, calling for a boycott of their products.
The group also incorrectly claims money raised by halal certification contributes to funding construction of Islamic mosques and global Islamic expansion.
Sydney-based company Halal Australia has been certifying producers and their products since 2005.
Chief executive Muhammad Khan refuted allegations funds from halal certifications were directed to Islamic terrorists.
"Halal certification profits do not go towards supporting any terrorist activities or violent politically motivated religious organisations," he said.
Mr Khan said Halal Australia did not provide the Byron Bay Cookie Company with halal certification.
Police confirmed they are investigating posts on the Facebook pages of both the company and its employees.
Companies selling halal-certified products include:
- Capilano honey
What you said:
STEVE SMART: Our Anzacs died for this country , why should a company disrespect them by complying with an Islamic tax that a percentage of goes to fund terrorism.
RACHEL JENNER: I think it's great that they recognise the fact that as a country we are made up of many faiths and religions and people that want to enjoy Anzac biscuits may belong to any number of these.
JASON HAILES: Good screw this halal SCAM. It is helping fund terrorism and Islamic schools which help breed new generations of extremists.
ERIKA TAYLOR: People are outraged on behalf of ANZAC soldiers who fought in Gallipoli?
Do they not realise there were many Muslim Anzacs that fought for this country, Britain, Canada, New Zealand.... or that the first Mosque was built in Australia in the 1860s?
LINDA MILLS: For goodness sakes. All halal means is compliance with certain requirements around hygiene and how an animal is butchered.
Nothing to do with supporting or funding terrorism.
This is another excuse to persecute and target a religion and for people to show how bigoted and racist they are.
JENNY DOWELL: It makes marketing sense to make and market all of their products as Halal so more of the world can enjoy them. I'm appalled that people would boycott a biscuit company for having good business sense.
MARS MIRZA: As a Muslim I half agree with the backlash.
The ingredients that go into making Anzac cookies have nothing to do with the dietary restrictions of Muslims, unless they use lard (which is mainly pig fat) instead of butter, but if they did that then that the cookies would be gross.
There is no reason to put a "halal" label on it, the ingredients list on the packing is enough to tell anyone these cookies are okay to eat. as many have pointed out this is purely marketing.
These cookies are exported and some Islamic countries the law prohibits the importing/sale of non halal foods.