News From : DagangHalal.com (03 Nov 2009)
With about 26 percent of the global population being Muslim, the transport of Halal products is fast becoming a major industry. Correspondent Phil Hastings reports on the advances the sector has made in the past few years
Halal logistics – with clearly-defined common international standards of operation and certification – are set to become an increasingly prominent feature in Asian supply chains and other worldwide trades involving Muslim countries.
That was the message to emerge at the recent Cool Logistics 09 Conference in Hamburg, Germany, from a presentation by Marco Tieman, chairman of the technical committee on halal logistics for the International Halal Integrity (IHI) alliance.
Tieman, who is also chief executive officer of LBB Teams in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, part of Netherlands-based supply chain consultancy and research company LBB International, pointed out that 26 to 28 percent of the global population was Muslim.
“The Halal industry is a big and fast-growing market. Integrity of ingredients and end-products either sourced from overseas or distributed to Muslim consumers worldwide is critical,” he said.
Speaking specifically about the industry sector, he said: “Halal logistics is one of the mega trends to watch in cool logistics. Halal is extending in the value chain. Halal logistics is the new trend, ensuring integrity from farm to fork.”
Tieman explained that the term Halal was used to describe anything that was permissible under Islamic law. To date, the main focus of the Halal industry had been on the production and consumption of food. However, Halal also covers cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, clothing, financial services and logistics. “Malaysia, for example, is a big producer of Halal vaccines,” he noted.
The Halal market, Tieman said, was estimated to be potentially worth US$2.77 trillion, with the largest individual sectors being processed goods and beverages (36 percent), pharmaceuticals (22 percent), bakery products (12 percent), primary meat (10 percent) and cosmetics/personal care products (nine percent).
“Halal logistics is the process of managing the material flow and information flow throughout the supply chain in accordance with a Halal standard,” said Tieman, adding that the IHI alliance had now established its own logistics stand
ard called IHI AS01. The basic principle of Halal logistics, he explained, was that Halal products should be segregated from non-Halal products to avoid cross-contamination and mistakes and to ensure consistency with the expectations of Muslim consumers.
In the case of a Halal warehouse, for example, there should be physical segregation of Halal and non-Halal cargo throughout the process. Halal products should have a dedicated storage zone or racks which are clearly separated by colour and/or marking. For refrigerated Halal products, a dedicated cold room or area segregated by a physical barrier should be provided.
On the transportation side, continued Tieman, where equipment had previously been used to move non-Halal or unknown shipments, it should be subjected to ritual cleansing before carrying Halal products. There should be no mixing of Halal goods with non-Halal products in one container.
When it came to packaging and labelling, a recognisable Halal supply chain mark or code should be applied to the pallet, load carrier or tertiary packaging. Relevant freight documents should also have a mark or code.
“Organisations such as a Halal warehouse, Halal transportation or Halal-compliant terminal should be audited by a competent Halal compliance officer and certified by an accredited Halal certification body,” said Tieman. “Halal competence is then maintained through internal or external audits.”
Tieman also pointed out that in addition to physical components such as segregation during warehousing and transport, Halal logistics had a “virtual” information element. “The fact that the product is Halal has to be communicated throughout the supply chain to make the parties aware that there are certain requirements when it comes to the handling of those products.”
Malaysian logistics company Cold Chain Network (CCN) is gearing up to break into the fast-growing Halal market through the Halalan-Toyyiban Pipeline “which represents a new certification standard that ensures that food products that are not just Halal but pure and hygienic throughout the entire process from producer to consumer,” explained LBB Teams.
LBB said efforts were being made to start a new certification standard for that pipeline by the fourth quarter of this year and CCN, in which Malaysian AgriFood Corporation (MAFC) had a 75 percent stake, was scheduled to be the first in the world to be certified with that award. CCN is currently Halal-certified for its warehouse facilities and management system.