More than 60 percent of halal product manufacturers were multinational companies owned by non-Muslims, according to the data from Malaysian Islamic Development Department (Jakim).
The reason behind is that non-Muslim producers realise the importance of halal certification for their products to be marketed both domestically and internationally, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Dr Mujahid Yusof said.
“On the other hand, many bumiputera entrepreneurs have yet to apply for halal certification from us… why they have not perplexes me,” he said in his speech at the 2019 Jakim Halfest held at the Mines International Exhibition Convention Centre (MIECC) in Seri Kembangan.
With Jakim halal certification, a product is not only instantly recognised as using halal ingredients but also was hygienic regardless if it was Muslim or non-Muslim produced, Mujahid said.
“With halal certification, bumiputera companies will be able to compete with multinationals, not only domestically, but in the foreign markets as well, giving their products more access and consumer confidence,” he said, urging the bumiputera and Muslim producers who have yet to apply for the Jakim halal certification to immediately do so.
He said that Islam never taught its followers to choose products according to race but pointed out on the importance of them being halal and hygienic.
“We have to focus on two important basics – Confidence in Halal Malaysia and Buy Malaysian Products First… we use halal as our benchmark. “As a Muslim, when I travel abroad, I look for halal food. I will ask if the food is halal or not, regardless of whom I am buying it from,” he said.