Have you ever been to a halal market before? If not, then, you are missing out on a lot of interesting finds you would probably wish you had in your kitchen pantry before. So, what are these halal markets, anyway?
Halal Market: What is It?
Halal markets are basically those stores that follow all of the rules of what is allowed in Islam as stated in the Quran. It can mean offering halal products to customers and staying away from haram or forbidden products.
This also means following every halal business practice down to the tee. A market that is halal can also serve as the center of the community and can also help to bring items from various foreign countries within easy reach of the local population. The goal of a halal market is to deliver what is required by those who practice or follow a halal lifestyle.
One of the key functions of most halal markets today is carrying and selling meats as well as other halal foods to their Muslim patrons. As far as meats are concerned, it is not always easy in most non-Muslim countries. Halal meat should only be obtained from a certified halal slaughterhouse or butcher. It should also be transported to the halal market exclusively by Muslims.
Halal Market Business Practices
A particularly tricky aspect for halal markets that also cater to non-Muslims is that all non-halal food items must be kept totally separate from the halal products. According to halal rules, any food that comes into contact with non-halal foods will become haram itself.
It means meats that may have been acquired from non-halal sources should be taken to the market through a separate entrance, kept in a different area, and showcased in a different spot from the halal meats.
Aside from correctly handling halal foods and looking for consistent suppliers of such foods, the halal market owner also needs to follow several halal business practices. It means not making a profit off haram items. In particular, the market shouldn’t sell lottery tickets or alcohol since liquor and gambling are both prohibited.
The rest of the halal business practices may seem a bit more obvious. These include things such as not treating customers unfairly and not stealing. This also means not partaking in certain things that other markets often do, like having insurance or investing.
Dealing with the non-Muslim vendors for the market supplies can often be a hindrance since the market is not allowed to have a credit card to be used for purchases that bears interest.
In certain communities, a halal market can also serve as a resource for the Muslim population. It can be seen once a store goes out of its way to offer traditional and specific items that are not easy to get. This can also be seen during holidays right when the market may give out free meals or meat for Ashura or sell decorations for Ramadan.
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