SINGAPORE — Authorities in Singapore are looking into allegations that a supposed meat cartel syndicate in Malaysia smuggles, repacks and relabels non-halal frozen meat items as ‘halal-certified’, and that some of this meat has been imported into the Republic.
Nonetheless, they assured the public that halal-certified meat products that are legally imported into Singapore may be consumed with confidence.
In a statement on Tuesday (Dec 29), the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (Muis) and the Singapore Food Agency (SFA) noted that there have been recent media reports in Malaysia regarding this alleged meat cartel syndicate, and that Malaysian authorities have said they are investigating the matter.
They added that there have been messages circulating on social media expressing concern that this frozen meat from Malaysia could have also been imported into Singapore, or that the alleged improprieties in the importation and packaging of halal meat could have also been taking place in Singapore.
“Muis and SFA are currently looking into the allegations raised to determine if the alleged improprieties affect the Singapore market,” the two agencies said.
Muis is also writing to the relevant authority in Malaysia to request for more information, they added.
“We would like to remind the public to always verify information from credible sources and not to spread rumours. Only meat and meat products from SFA-accredited overseas establishments can be imported into Singapore.”
Imported meat and meat products are also subjected to SFA’s food safety surveillance programme to ensure that they meet SFA’s import requirements and regulatory standards, they said.
Furthermore, the two agencies said, meat which is imported for the Muslim market and Muis’ certificate holders must meet halal requirements.
SINGAPORE: Authorities in Singapore are looking into allegations to determine if non-halal frozen meat items that have been relabelled as halal-certified for sale in Malaysia has affected the Singapore market.
There have been several reports in Malaysia regarding an alleged meat cartel syndicate based in Malaysia that smuggles, repacks and relabels non-halal frozen meat items as halal-certified for sale in Malaysia, said the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (MUIS) and the Singapore Food Agency (SFA) in a joint statement on Tuesday (Dec 29).
MUIS is writing to the relevant authorities in Malaysia to request for more information. SFA and MUIS reminded the public to verify information from credible sources and not to spread rumours.
POLICE REPORTS MADE IN MALAYSIA
On Tuesday, a number of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in Malaysia made police reports on the meat cartel scandal, reported Bernama.
Malaysia Muslim Halal Meat Importers Association president Dr Mohd Noor Ali Akbar said his association and the other NGOs urged the Malaysian government to act fast in response to public concern over the issue.
“The importation of meat needs to be reviewed and stringently checked as the public should know clearly about it. This issue needs full clarification as it involves public interest,” he said.
“We, as importers of meat, agree that a Royal Commission of Inquiry be set up to investigate whether the existing standard operating procedure is already sufficient or needs to be enhanced,” he told Bernama after lodging a report at the Dang Wangi police headquarters in Kuala Lumpur.
Malaysian media outlets have reported about a cartel bringing in frozen meat from China, Ukraine, Brazil and Argentina, and repackaging the meat using the halal logo at a warehouse in Senai, Johor.
A frozen meat importer allegedly involved in the meat cartel scandal in Johor will be charged in court on Wednesday for using fake halal logos on its vehicles, Bernama reported.