Effective April 4 the new halal labeling and advertising requirements will be enforced following a two-year transition period, says the Canadian Food Inspection Agency on its website this week.
Amendments to the Food and Drug Regulations were published in Canada Gazette, Part II on April 23, 2014.
“As of April 4, all halal claims on food labels, packaging and advertising materials will need to be accompanied by the name of the organization or person that certified it as halal,” says the CFIA.
Halal is a religious designation for Muslims; the standards are vaguely similar to kosher for Jews.
“Halal claims on food are voluntary, however, if a halal claim is made on a product label, packaging or in advertising, then it must follow the regulatory requirements,” says the CFIA, adding that it “will take compliance and enforcement actions if the requirements are not met.
“These changes do not affect food safety. All food sold in Canada, including halal products, must meet Canada’s stringent food safety standards."