Indonesia sets deadline on New Zealand halal demands

by Bryan Salvage
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OTAGO, NEW ZEALAND — Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim country, has stopped New Zealand meat shipments and set a deadline of Oct. 1 for that country to fix the halal certification at 60 meat plants listed to export to Indonesia, according to the Otago Daily Times. In 2008, exports to Indonesia were worth approximately US$57 million.

Following a report from Indonesia's Muslim clerical organization, the Ulema Council (M.U.I.) that charged New Zealand meat was not halal because halal certificates for slaughterhouses throughout New Zealand were not recognized, hundreds of imported meat containers have since been quarantined at Jakarta's port.

The M.U.I. conducted a complete evaluation on halal certifying bodies in New Zealand and recognized none, according to Tjeppy Sudjana, Indonesian Agriculture Ministry director general of livestock.

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