Bandar Seri Begawan - The Halal industry is gaining prominence globally with its value in 2011 estimated at US$2.1 trillion.
The market is inundated with a range of Halal products, especially in the food sector, which garnered almost 60 per cent of the market overall.
Aside from their prominence in Muslim countries, the Halal industry and products are now also receiving acceptance in many non-Muslim countries where Muslims reside.
Additionally, Halal products are finding its way among non-Muslim consumers who believe that such products are meeting their requirements in terms of safety and wholesomeness.
In relation to this, a talk titled 'Nurturing the Local Halal Industry' was delivered by Haji Sabri bin Haji Md Taha, Head of Halal Industry Innovation Centre, Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources.
Hj Sabri highlighted that Brunei Darussalam is renowned with its stringent Halal certification requirements and has been producing Halal food over along period of time.
Therefore, it is one of the Sultanate's objectives as well as an initiative for the Brunei Halal Brand projects to make their products readily available, as well as being safe, of high quality and fulfilling the religious obligations.
Since launching the Brunei Halal Brand in 2008, the nation has been earnest to be in the forefront of the global Halal industry. Various programmes and strategies have been drawn up and implemented to support the initiative.
These include the Brunei Agro Technology Park for the development of the local Halal industry with participation from both the local SMEs and foreign companies as well as the establishment of the Halal Science Centpe as a reference for providing analytical detection services, the Halal accreditation and Halal database.
The Brunei Agro Technology Park also has the objective to diversify economical strategies as well as to accommodate research and innovative technology applications to support diversification, including primary industries and related processing to build on and support the development of the Brunei Halal Brand.
Once the Brunei Agro Technology Park is completed, it has the potential to create over 9,000 jobs.
At present, the Brunei Halal products have entered the Singapore market and, according to Hj Sabri, Brunei Halal is also trying to enter the European market through an office based in Birmingham in the UK.
Aside from this, Brunei is currently working towards the establishment of the Halal Product Academy, which consists of Syariah scholars, Halal scientists and industry experts, and the academy will hopefully be established in the hear future, added Hj Sabri.
--Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin