Halal food and drink spend up 5%

12 November 2019

Global spend on halal food and drink grew over 5% in 2018, totaling $1.37tn, but non-Muslim countries are the top exporters of halal foods, according to a report.

The report by consultancy DinarStandard found the halal market has expanded beyond ritually-slaughtered meat to cover ingredients such as gelatin, additives and colourings.

Confectionery manufacturers Haribo, Nestlé and Ferrero Rocher have all acquired halal certification to reassure Muslim consumers and drive sales, the report said. 

It found Muslim spend on food and beverages was valued at $1.4tn in 2018 and is forecast to reach $2tn by 2024.

Last year, $210bn of halal food and beverages were exported to 57 Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) member states. Indonesia spent the most on halal food last year, totaling $173bn. It was followed by Turkey at $135bn and Pakistan at $119bn.

However, the top halal food exporters are non-Muslim countries, the report found. Major halal meats exporter Brazil sold around $5.5bn to OIC states, followed by Australia ($2.4bn) and Sudan ($621m).

The report said halal food has seen a “major evolution” in the past year, which has been driven by technology such as apps and blockchain to improve traceability. Governments are also supporting the sector through the development of “halal hubs”.

“At the macro level, the UAE and China have inked a $1bn agreement for a food manufacturing and processing plant in Dubai, while Indonesia aims to launch an $18m Halal Lifestyle District”, it said.  

The report added that a key challenge for the halal food sector revolves around certification and assuring consumers that food adheres to Islamic requirements. 

“As the food production chain has changed, Muslims have had to pay heightened attention to labelling of products across the value chain, with concerns spanning non-ritually slaughtered meat to porcine gelatin, additives, and colourings,” it added. 

The sector is also increasingly being asked to be mindful of its social impact. As halal certification is fragmented around the world, sustainability has yet to be incorporated into the process. The sector has “substantial runway” to realise its full ethical role, DinarStandard said.  

“Albeit with some positive development in halal, the halal food industry can play a stronger role in supporting the environment and in driving improved outcomes for the world’s poorest,” the report said.

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