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Pork Free does not mean Halal :D



Yesterday, I called this one place to inquire about the halal status of the food they served. My friend was going to hold a celebration thinggy, and I and a few friends were invited. I of course couldn't make it since I have to standby 24/7 for the wifey to beranak... Tapi, some of my frens might be going, so I reckon a quick ask won't hurt as I didn't want them to go without being 'warned'... (in case haram laaa...)

The place was a Chinese establishment... somewhere in the Gardens, Mid Valley. Got the number thru the internet and managed to speak to a Chinese girl. I changed my English slang a bit, making it sound a bit alien (British + Aussie... I think :P)... because I found out that by doing this, people would think I'm a foreigner and treat me more seriously :P Works you know... sometimes la :P  

Anywayz, I politely asked the Chinese girl a few questions... and finally gave her the big question of halal certification (or basically who is giving the halal claim for their food?) 

Alfian: "I was just wondering, is there any certification for the halal food that you are serving for the buffet dinner?"

Girl: "Oh... Mmmmm... We have rice, chicken... bla bla bla" --> She was giving me the menu

Alfian: "No no... I don't want the menu. I need to know about the halal certification..."

Girl: "Oh! Our buffet dinner... we don't have that (certification). We only serve NORMAL halal food!"
[Aiyo? When did the ulamaks come up with normal and abnormal halal food? :P Clearly, this girl has the slightest idea of what halal or haram is... ]

Alfian: "Oh, no no. I think you must have misunderstood me. I mean, do you have any certification for the food you serve. I am not asking for the menu. I want certification... Do you have any from JAKIM, or maybe even IFANCA (that was indeed a long shot :P) ...?"

Girl: "Wait ah..." 

- the waiting song plays in my ears -

A Man: "Yes sir? What is it?" - this stupid guy had very bad PR....

Alfian: "Hi there. I was wondering from whom you are getting the halal certification ? For you buffet dinner that is..."

A Man: "Oh, halal a? Here halal..."

Alfian: "Are you sure? Then can you please tell me about the certification? Since I plan to bring some people over to your place, and they are very particular about this issue... thanks"

A Man: "Here is pork free. It is not halal, but pork free...."

Alfian: "Oooh. Pork free... ok then. Thank you..."

A Man: - just put down the phone.... -

Alfian: [Dalam hati... ku'ang hajau... tak lajau nak cakap elok2 ke? Lahabau Bahawau Makau Di Pinggau Minum Di Cawau.... heheheheh. Ni Melaka broken, jgn mara aa :P]...

Anywayz... that was the case :D Even though I sorta KNEW that it was gonna be HARAM to begin with, just had to ask... KOT KOT laaa... who knows, nowadays we have non-Muslims who actually know what halal really means, and have taken the initiative to get certificaion from JAKIM ka, ASIA PACIFIC ka.... or mana mana ka. But alas not for this particular place.... NORMAL halal? Gimme a break!!!

But (sometimes) I don't blame them. I don't think they ever publicly claimed to be halal (except for that not so smart girl I talked to... "Normal HALAL!!!"... That's a first for me.....). They don't even know what halal is! (most of the non-Muslims that is...) But it's actually some of US Muslims who just assume everything is halal as long as it's pork free!!! Or when somebody says its halal, then they just accept by using the 'tawakal' card... That's more ignorance than anything else...

As for my friend who is recommending the place, he/she says that it is halal because.... his/her company always goes there... Hmmm... I really thought I should have told him/her that it's not a strong enough reason to even consider stepping foot into a non-Muslim eatery [furthermore, it's a Karaoke place... :'( ...] ... But since I myself am not sure how to delicately handle the situation... I just sorta told him/her to be careful... since pork free does not mean halal. Anywayz... I don't think he/she purposely wanted a non-halal place. Maybe he/she thought that just by simply asking, and getting the halal-nod (from a non-Muslim) was enough. Hope my message got thru to him/her tho... Need to be more scrupulous in these matters ye dok? :D

Itu lah kisah nya :D Some people might say that..."Don't be too strict!!! Nanti susah!!!" ...
I don't think this is being too strict. Come on, we're not in a state of emergency (DARURAT!!!). We are not in a position where if we don't eat something, we'd starve to death. Comparing HALAL_KEDAI_MAKAN_TEPI_JALAN to DAVE's DELI (whom I am not sure dah ada halal certification atau belum? Last time I checked takde lagi... kalau dah ada, plz correct me...)... you won't die or get gastritis if you don't eat the latter's foot-long sausage.... (ada ke? :P)....

So, I think putting a little effort in making sure what enters our belly is halal, is worth every penny/sweat/research methodology/internet browse etc :) Even though, yeah, sometimes we might get tricked by irresponsible people (e.g. like TESCO with it's chicken last time...), but at least we've done our best. And that's all Allaah wants us to give... our very best with what we have :D If we've done that insyaAllaah, He will guide us to the path that we are searching for :D

Wokeh, hope this post has been of some benefit.... Assalaam aleykom :D

7 comments:

azwad said...

Good work bro!

A number of Muslims are actually accepted blindly that a place that do not serve pork as halal.

For me, we can only tawakal once there is a halal certification. Unless we still want to speculate that the cert is expired or forged oronly applied to some products etc then we better not eat there.

Alfian_Troxion said...

allloo bro azwad :D

yeah, i was once like that oso. dulu lagi la, janji made in malaysia, i oredi tot halal. and bila ada orang dok cakap that i was being too fussy.. naik meradang pon ada. tapi alhamdulillaah diberi sedikit hidayah utk faham benda2 ni... hehehe...

For me the same also la... when ada cert, then ok :) tapi one other thing that concerns me ... is that at food courts... dia orang halal certify only the raw materials... e.g. the ayam, daging... all from halal suppliers.

but there's sometimes no guarantee that non halal ingredients are not used :( since most of the food court stalls are owned by non muslims, and the workers are also non malaysians

PS:- Jabatan Agamam Pulau pinang once told me, that a premise should have AT LEAST TWO LOCALS (Muslims) working at a food premise... so that can act as pemantau la. but we rarely see that happening rite? most locals kadang2 tak mau kerja kat food stalss... :'( End up indonesians, or filipinos... so susah nak pantau....

Oyis said...

to be honest duduk luar msia baru la nak amik port psl benda2 ni. dah terbiasa assume yg semuanya halal kat msia. skang baru la tahu x semua coklat halal, especially yg ada whey mcm ferrero roche yg syg nya, ramai wat hadiah hantaran dan dsb nya. even ayam kat stalls pon agak wary jg, tp x pe la kalo dah ada cert tu, insya Allah la.

hrp2 balik nnt pon akan kekal la aktiviti menge-check ingredients tu. mmg terkejut jg sbb byk rupanya dah ter.... di negara islam kita sendiri lg huhu... astaghfirullah al azim...

aznah said...

i find that most of the time these restaurants dont have halal certification because of the whole process one has to go thru to obtain it, so they just say pork free. AND i also see that alot of non muslims dont know what halal is, they think it just means 'no pork', so yes, they buy all their goods from halal markets but then use soy sauces containing alcohol. then you have muslims who think halal does mean "pork free". sigh. what makes me wonder is if non mslims really knew what halal was all about, would they be uncomfortable eating halal food then??

Alfian_Troxion said...

Noris: Aku pun sama Noris. Lepas aku balik buat masters baru la tertingkat sikit awareness pasal benda2 ni (and also other religious stuff). Pasal makanan, yeous, aku dulu pernah gak tanya kawan2, halal ke F rocher... but of course, dia orang cakap balik, cekelat camne leh haram? ...
cekelat mmg le idok ada haramnye, tapi bila dah tercampur benda lain, maka ter lah jadi haraam. hehehe.
As for ayam, skg aku beli kat market... n not from tesco or kapok (carrefour) anymore :) Lagik rasa kondifen. hehehe

Aznah: Betui tu che nah :D The process is quite long, ... not sure about the cost, but I think it aint cheap as well. As for muslims being uncomfortable eating halal food... i dont think they will feel uncomfortable :) I mean, its 'clean' food :D So its for the better...But of course, many dont know the concept... but i think they dont mind makan-ing anyway ... i tink la :P

Anonymous said...

your post is really helpful

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