Misconception: Halal meat uses an inhumane slaughter method
The Arabic word "halal"
simply means "lawful".
The Quran only forbids the following food: carrion, pig
meat, running blood and from animals dedicated to other than
God, however there are exceptions due to hunger/coercion for
example [2:173, 5:3, 6:145, 16:115]. Also not allowed are
animals that have been killed by strangulation, violent
blows, fallen from a height, gored [5:3].
The guidance suggests that
a humane method of slaughter which allows the blood to drain
out is the goal. For example, a common method of slaughter
in Europe and North America involves stunning of the animal
to render them unconscious, then they are hung upside down
to have the throat cut. Whilst there is a little controversy
among some Muslims surrounding the acceptance of stunning,
the aforementioned method would pass the criteria given in
The Quran. Meat designated "halal"
in these countries often employ this technique.
In addition to the Traditional Islamic ritual slaughter
(with or without prior stunning), it should be noted that
similar methods of slaughter would also be acceptable, for
example the Jewish "Kosher" method:
Today, the good things have been
made lawful to you, the food of those who have been
given the decree/book is lawful for you, and your food
is lawful for them...
The message of The
Quran is intended to be universal, for all people at all
times, thus it has to balance a simple and effective method of
animal slaughter with one that results in minimal suffering.
If technology can be utilised to further reduce animal
suffering then this complements the basic goal in The Quran
regarding this matter.