As the US emerges from its pandemic-depressed business environment, Americans are looking for healthier ways to live and eat, and businesses are meeting the challenge. Worldwide, halal is already a multitrillion-dollar industry.
In the US, it’s now a rapidly growing multibillion-dollar market because halal products and services appeal not only to Muslims, but also to consumers who are conscious about what they put into their bodies, how businesses treat their employees, and the impacts of human activities on the environment.
Most Americans know that halal means what is “allowed” in Islam as a method of slaughtering animals for human consumption. What they don’t know is that the ethical principles underlying the allowed method, by definition, lead to a more “gentle method of slaughter,” according to Samir Labriny, a Moroccan American chef and expert on nutrition.
“It’s important to me to raise awareness of what’s best for people as far as healthy food. A lot of people cleanse their bodies [using supplements] and fast [for certain periods], but I think the best method is to look at it from an organic standpoint—what you put into your body in the first place,” he said. In other words, you should eat only animals that are raised in a healthy, organic way, without toxins, and then slaughtered in a manner that is humane, quick, and does not cause unnecessary trauma to the animal.
According to Labriny, from a scientific approach, halal meat is the most healthy to eat because it is by definition organic, and slaughtered in a gentle manner that avoids releasing toxins into the meat during the slaughter.
Halal, however, is a lifestyle that involves a lot more than just food. It involves living in accordance with ethical principles and fairness. The annual Halal Expo & Summit USA has been demonstrating this to American consumers over the last several years.
Now in its fourth year, the Expo & Summit focuses on business-to-business interests. With a dynamic exhibition space and discussion sessions to be held over two days on October 21-21 near Washington, DC, the event will feature exhibitors from all over the world, as well as cooking demonstrations, and a modest fashion show.
It will address issues critical to the halal industry in America and provide in-person and virtual participation opportunities for businesses in the U.S. and Canada, and around the world to explore practical business solutions to meet the demands of the growing US halal market. This is the only professional expo of its kind in the US dedicated to halal, according to the organizers.
This year, the event has been redesigned to more effectively facilitate networking and commerce opportunities with the top halal businesses in the U.S., according to Marwan Ahmad, CEO and founder of Halal Expo USA and U.S. Halal Consultants. “After three years of presenting the annual Halal Expo & Summit, we totally understand the growing demand for halal products and services in the U.S. market,” said Ahmad.
“We designed the Expo & Summit to provide both practical business solutions as well as the opportunity for halal producers and suppliers to operate in one of the most important markets in the world.” During the summit part of the conference, experts, academics, and business leaders will be engaging in panel discussions on the hottest topics. Among other things, they’ll cover operations and logistics, and halal standards and certification, while focusing on key sectors of the halal industry such as finance, investment, and tourism.
Other sectors include cosmetics, vitamins, and supplements, textiles, and modest fashion for men and women. US Halal Consultants is the only consulting group in the US specializing in the halal industry, according to Ahmad. It was founded in January 2021 to meet the need of businesses to respond to growing US consumer demand. Halal Expo 2021 is organized by industry leader Arabesque Media and is expected to be both in person and virtual.
The organizers are incorporating the special electronic platform created for last year’s virtual Expo & Summit to once again allow participation by speakers and enterprises from all over the globe.