Halal Food Dilemmas: Case of Muslims in British Columbia, Canada
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Halal, Zabiha, Integrity, Muslims, Canada.

How to Cite

Alhabshi, S. M. . (2013). Halal Food Dilemmas: Case of Muslims in British Columbia, Canada. International Journal of Asian Social Science, 3(4), 847–870. Retrieved from https://archive.aessweb.com/index.php/5007/article/view/2458


The last decade witnessed an astronomical increase in the demand for halal products and services. The developments are imperative particularly in this globalizing world where the need to accommodate clients with halal preferences is intensifying given its relative impact on businesses in numerous but significant dimensions. However, how many businesses are abiding by the intricate rules of halal or can they really abide by the fundamentals of halal? This article examines Muslim food outlets viz. restaurants and stalls; and butchers and grocery stores in British Columbia (BC), Canada - a multiethnic, multicultural and multi-religious province settling quite a sizeable number of almost every ethnicity in the world. Given the dynamic nature of BC, the paper specifically sets out to examine the nature of halal practices among Muslim food outlets and to explore the motivation behind their growing numbers and to check the nature of their continuity in business. Complementing this primary objective, the paper also seeks to justify the assumption behind the increasing accessibility to halal foods as attributed to the growing number of Muslim food outlets. Research found Muslims foods are readily available in British Columbia but specifically in areas where Muslims are concentrated. Muslim as mentioned here rather than halal seems appropriate given the nature of Muslim food stores that indulged in haram practices. By implication, though there are many Muslim stores, however, the zabiha conscious Muslims will still find difficulty searching for halal foods. The role of halal certification institution is still relatively insignificant in light of the low publicity of halal logo and certification. The future of halal zabiha stores at the moment seems questionable but the prospects of Muslims stores remain high in light of increasing Muslim migrants into Canada and the keen interest of the government to make “halal” foods, namely meat, its export niche. (334 words)

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