Lab analyses taken place by Genetic ID Europe has highlighted packaging as the cause of contaminated halal food.
The firm has found that porcine (pork) that is used in lubricants for industrial packaging machines can make its way, alongside other animal fats, through the substrates of the packaging and into the food product itself.
Packaging: Main Source of Contamination
Some stearates also have animal derivatives including pork and has been put down as a possible source of the food contamination.
Other courses have been considered by the firm as mixed supply chains where halal food types and non halal are packed in the same facilities and residue can be left and mixed between the two types. The firm has urged manufacturers to ensure that a thorough cleaning of these mixed packaging facilities take place.
Recycled paper has also been reported by the firm to carry traits of animal products from the last time it was used and this can also be carried forward.
Although there are growing reports of Pork in halal food, Genetic Id Europe has said, this could partly be down to the growing of sophistication of the testing that is now taking place.
Halal food is eaten when following the traditional Islamic diet and it completely does away with pork and Alcohol. Halal branded food products are highly trusted by those following this traditional diet not to have these food traces in them.
There are many who eat Halal. To put this in perspective, consumer numbers for halal are 1.6bn and the market is said to hold a global value of around $600bn.
Halal food manufacturers have been advised by Genetic ID Europe to be ‘vigilant' about this issue and for them to insist on ‘rigorous' testing and certification of the packaging as well as their food products.