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Joe M. Regenstein, Mian Nadeem Riaz, Muhammad Chaudry and Carrie E. Regenstein

The halal food industry is a potential sleeping giant. The 1.3 billion or more Muslims in the world represent 20 to 25 percent of the world’s market, and with 57 countries in the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) the need for halal foods, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals is large and growing because of both population growth and an increased purchasing power in the Muslim world. Particularly central to the Muslim way of life is the availability of halal foods that are produced so as to be consistent with the requirements of different Muslim communities but which are absolutely trustworthy and are clearly presented as halal. Getting to that point will require an effort by the Muslim community to clearly and respectfully define their standards, while recognizing that no one standard will cover the needs of all Muslims. The Muslim community then need to work with the food industry and the Muslim certifying agencies to see that a system is created that can serve their needs in a cost-effective manner that also provides a truly halal and tayyab (wholesome) food supply for Muslims in all countries, whether Muslim majority or not.