Wayne County Butchers Who Falsely Claim Meat is Halal, Kosher to Face Fine

August 5, 2005

Source: The Detroit News


On August 5, 2005 The Detroit News reported, "Wayne County butchers selling bogus blessed meat soon could find themselves in trouble with the law.

Acting on a string of complaints, the County Commission on Thursday made it a misdemeanor for food sellers to falsely claim their meat is halal or kosher. Halal food includes beef, lamb or chicken slaughtered according to Islamic law. Kosher food is prepared under strict Jewish rules.

When the ordinance takes effect in 44 days, violations will be punishable by $500 fines or 90 days in jail.

Although it applies to kosher and halal food, the ordinance was prompted because of the popularity of halal food. Once hard to find, the blessed meat now is available at Metro Detroit chain supermarkets, Asian restaurants and even two McDonald's restaurants in Dearborn.

It's so ubiquitous now that some of southeast Michigan's 100,000 Muslims have trouble trusting the meat that claims to be halal... The ordinance requires stores making the halal or kosher claim to post conspicuous signs identifying the slaughterhouse and wholesaler. County health inspectors would respond to complaints about scofflaws and issue citations, said County executive Robert Ficano."