The Slaughter of animals by mechanical means, (including sacred blade) is not permissible and considered haram (forbidden) for Muslims. A Halal Conference was held at Hijaz College, Nuneaton, UK on February 22nd, 2014. Religious scholars from different schools of fiqh and Halal industry experts were present at the conference.
Halal Authority Board (HAB) proposed to get a declaration signed off by all attendees stating that, “The slaughter of animals by mechanical means, (including sacred blade) is not permissible and considered haram (forbidden) for Muslims. Only hand slaughter undertaken by Muslim Slaughter men is acceptable and considered as Halal.”
Mohamamd Amir, Technical Director of Halal Assure-IP (HAIP), Assure-IP (UK), supported the declaration that Machine Slaughter is haram but raised a valid objection that the second part of declaration was incomplete and misleading. According to Mr Amir the declaration does not give information on whether or not the birds are water bath stunned prior to hand slaughter by Muslim slaughter men. He explained to the attendees the consequences of water bath stunning and how it affects Halal integrity and they agreed with him. Mr Amir proposed that since the use of water bath stunning for Halal slaughter is controversial and requires further research the declaration should be amended and the amended declaration should be, “The slaughter of animal by mechanical means, (including sacred blade) is not permissible and considered haram (forbidden) for Muslims.” All attendees approved and signed off the joint declaration. Mr Amir has also proposed a declaration for food business operators, Halal certifiers as well as the manufacturers of water bath stunning equipment, that if they wish to claim water bath stunned poultry as Halal and complying with Islamic Dietary Law, they would need to sign a declaration.
Religious Minister of Craven Arms Islamic Centre, Imam Sohaib Peerbhai said, during the conference, “The Muslim community is united on the issue of Mechanical Slaughter being unislamic. Hopefully we can now work on other pressing issues.”