The term halal is exclusive to Muslims. Halal is a word derived from the Arabic language, and it defines the idea of ‘permitted’ and ‘acceptable.’ From the Muslim perspective, the term halal usually refers to the food or drinks that they can consume. However, it is not limited to the area of food only. Several conditions need to be taken note of to classify the goods or services to be halal.
According to the general guidelines for the handling and processing of Halal Food by MUIS (Majlis Ugama Islam Singapura), Halal products are:
- Devoid of pigs and dogs
- It does not contain intoxicating drugs and alcohol ingredients
- Does not derive from meats of animals that have not been properly slaughtered following the Islamic shariah law
- The products are not exposed or handled with any utensils or tools that have relations to pigs, dogs, drugs, alcohol, or najs (feces).
How To Be Halal Certified?
In order to be recognized as a halal Singapore company or manufacturer, your business must abide by all the Halal requirements. After ensuring that all the products are as per the Halal guidelines, your business can apply for Halal certifications through MUIS, which manages all the Halal certificates in Singapore.
SINGAPORE HALAL CERTIFICATION PROGRAM
What Is Halal Certification, And How Long Is It Valid?
A halal certificate is granted by MUIS to the business applicant who wants to be recognized as producing halal produce or service. MUIS or known as the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore appoints a Halal standards committee, which is made up of religious experts, business leaders, and government representatives.
MUIS and SPRING Singapore worked together to produce the Singapore MUIS Halal Standards (SMHS) for every business.
Its goals are to give clear religious and technical certification criteria, to improve uniformity concerning adherence to the requirements and conditions of Singapore’s Halal certification, and to open up Halal trade and other economic possibilities.
Halal certification’s validity spans 1 to 2 years before the expiration date. The MUIS Halal certificate is subject to renewal based on the period stated on the certificate.
One prerequisite for the Singapore MUIS Halal certification is creating a Halal team. It is outlined in Principle 1 of the Singapore MUIS Halal Quality Management System (HalMQ), that all businesses in Singapore with halal certification are required to have a Halal Team.
The role of the Halal team is to advise and oversee all the Halal matters and religious sensitivities for the company.
A Halal Team should comprise at least 2 members:
- A Halal Team leader
- The Muslim Representative
Both leaders are mandated to go through the Halal training program by the MUIS-appointed training provider.
If you want to register your business in SG, check out this guide.
7 TYPES OF PROGRAM/BUSINESS SCHEMES FOR HALAL CERTIFICATION
At present, MUIS has stated 7 types of Halal Certification Schemes. This scheme is served as a guideline for which business entities or services can apply for Halal Certification and join the Halal industry in Singapore. The 7 Halal Scheme are as follows:
- Eating Establishment Scheme – Food restaurants, café, school canteen, stalls, etc.
- Product Scheme – Manufacturer company that is both in or outside of Singapore
- Endorsement Scheme – Exported or imported goods that enter Singapore
- Storage Facility Scheme – Warehouse of rooms that offer storage solutions
- Food Preparation Area Scheme – Catering business or kitchen facilities
- Whole Plant Scheme – Manufacturing facility for products
- Poultry Abattoir Scheme – Poultry slaughterhouse business
REQUIREMENTS FOR SG HALAL CERTIFICATION
MUIS has released the Halal certification conditions that every potential applicant for Halal certification must go through to obtain a successful application. Additionally, MUIS also set out a requirement that must be fulfilled for your business to be recognized as a halal entity.
The list below highlights the 5 most crucial requirements every business needs to comply with to apply for a Halal certification:
- For processing matters, all raw ingredients and additives must be Halal. The Halal status needs to be acknowledged on the MUIS halal system. This email system is used to submit requests for Halal certification for the Singaporean business entity. The declaration must provide 1 or more supporting documentation to prove their Halal status.
- Applicants must precisely describe the scope of certification for their business products. This can be achieved by labeling and submitting a floor plan to MUIS. Applicants must also ensure that no shady or questionable materials are included in the certification process.
- To handle and process Halal products and materials, applicants must ensure that the production lines, cooking spaces, storage rooms, crockery, utensils, and dishwashing facilities are clearly defined. Any equipment or facilities that previously had direct contact with objects classified as Haram must be disclosed and submitted to ritual washing by MUIS.
- Applicants are required to hire at least 2 Muslims. One of the Muslim workers must be the “Muslim Representative” on the Halal Team.
- The Singapore MUIS Halal Quality Management System (HalMQ) contains 10 principles that all applicants must follow. One guiding principle is to form a Halal Team to monitor adherence to the MUIS Halal Certification Conditions.
According to the MUIS, there is mandatory Halal Training that the 2 Muslim workers must undergo before obtaining the Halal Certification in Singapore. Two workers must complete 1 of the training programs offered in the Halal Foundation Program.
The two Halal training programs are called:
Training for Operational Level Learners (Online and Blended Learning options)
This Halal Foundation Program is done on an operational level. This training aims to grant the worker a necessary understanding of Halal fundamental principles. At the end of the course, participants could apply the abilities acquired in the program to their daily professional tasks. The fee for this course is $390 for each individual.
Training for Supervisory Level Learners (Online Learning Option Only)
This is a more varied and complex format of fundamental, operational-level training. It comprises a 1-day Zoom session and a 5-hour mobile training session. The fee for this course is $310.
Each employee should take only one course.
PROCEDURE TO OBTAIN A SINGAPORE HALAL CERTIFICATION
The procedure to obtain a Halal Certification in Singapore is extremely straightforward. The guide below will cover the entire process to assist your application.
It is worth noting that all the applications can be made through online means via the GoBusiness licensing webpage.
There are 3 steps that you need to follow before applying on the webpage.
STEP 1: Declaring the business information
This step is to state your business’s basic information, such as the name/brand and the company’s address or the manufacturer’s locations.
STEP 2: Prepare the necessary documents
Along with submitting your business information, proper documentation that covers the menu, ingredients, suppliers, floor plan, and premise layout must be submitted too. The vendor of the raw ingredients must be labeled and described them properly by providing photos if necessary.
STEP 3: Pay the Application Fees
Two types of fees can be paid for the procedure. This is because a fast-track process is offered for the applicant. The fees and durations for different applications are as follows:
- Normal Application $159 – 14 days
- Fast-Track Application $340 – 7 days
If you have further inquiries on the procedures to obtain the Singapore Halal Certifications, you can reach and email our experts at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Applying for a Halal Certificate in Singapore is fairly easy as long as you abide by the Halal guidelines provided by the MUIS. Obtaining a Halal certificate can provide a worthwhile advantage for your business as well. A benefit such as connecting and expanding the Halal market from Singapore to another country is possible as Muslims are the largest consumer of Halal produce.
Moreover, the market for Halal food is also growing at a very fast pace as nowadays Halal food is not only sought after by Muslims. Hence, venturing into a Halal sector is not a loss for many businesses.
Can The Certifications Be Revoked?
MUIS will conduct a random inspection to ensure that the holder of the Halal Certificate is still obliged under the Halal guideline. Hence, if your company is found to breach the MUIS Halal Certification Conditions, the certificate will be suspended or revoked with immediate effect.
Should The Halal Certificate Be Renewed?
Yes. The certificate must be renewed at least 1 to 3 months before the expiration date starting from the issuance date of the certificate. The renewal fees differ for different schemes that your business follows.
Does A Certificate For A Different Halal Scheme Have Different Fees And Validity Periods?
Yes. Every scheme has different fees and validity periods. For an in-depth comparison of the fees and validity period for each scheme.
Check the revised Halal Scheme Information