Norway’s meat producer looks for alternative Halal certificate as it mistrusts in IRN

Islamic Council Norway Nortura Agreement
Nortura, the Norwegian largest meat producer has announced to end its agreement of halal meat certification with Islamic Council Norway (IRN) and now it is looking forward to engage alternative organization for halal certification.
The Oslo based Nortura which produces and sells meat and egg products in Norway, has been engages in slaughtering, cutting, processing, and egg packing activities, as well as the provision of advisory services since 1896.
Since 2006, Nortura had an agreement on halal certification of certain products with IRN. The agreement implies reading a gratitude for the animal during anesthesia before it is slaughtered in an ordinary manner. It is currently only IRN that performs such certification in Norway and Nortura’s decision not to renew this agreement which will expire next year. 

“We feel responsible for ensuring that all customer groups in Norway have access to meat from animals slaughtered in accordance with Norwegian regulations. Also Norwegian Muslims must be able to obtain meat that is safe, Norwegian, and produced according to the same strict requirements for stunning, animal welfare, hygiene and quality as everyone else, without having to agree with this, “says communications director Ellen Flø Skagen.

Nortura has now notified IRN that they do not want to extend the agreement. 

“We have made an assessment over several months and found it to be the right one for us. Trust in IRN from both major communities, authorities and the Muslim community is important to us, and unfortunately, we are experiencing doubt about it, “says the communications director. 

Nortura will continue to offer halal products according to the same procedures as today, but without IRN certifying this. “We have been doing this for many years and will do it in the same way as before, and hope that the Muslim market trusts us here. Then we will consider other alternatives, “says Flø Skagen. 

In total, Nortura produces around 1,400 tonnes of halal per year. IRN receive a huge fee for halal certificate from Notura company.

On other hand, in a statement IRN hopes that Nortura will resume cooperation with it. We have had a good cooperation with Nortura and regret that the company does not want to renew the cooperation agreement, the statement said. We appreciate this cooperation in obtaining halal meat products for Muslim consumers and hope that the cooperation can be resumed, the statement continued.

It is at the time, Norwegian media frequently publishes the articles about disputes in the ranks of IRN.
Issues which are being published are withdrawal of membership of five Islamic centers, differences with Secretary General and nikab of a female official of IRN.
The organization which left IRN, are the Islamic Community of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Islamic Federation, the Albanian Islamic Cultural Center, the Albanian Culture Confederation of Norway, and the Islamic Information Society.
The critical situation concerning IRN is a serious matter as the media has highlighted it largely.
As for these five organizations, IRN’s statement did not consider them as important elements.  

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