KUALA LUMPUR: The country relied on only 18 per cent of imported beef supply from the Thomas Foods International (TFI) Lobethal abattoir in Australia, which allegedly breached slaughtering standard operating procedures, food safety, hygiene and halal standards.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Religious Affairs) Datuk Idris Ahmad said efforts to obtain more evidence to resolve the issue were on-going and there was no compromise on halal and haram requirements.

“There are 16 abattoirs of which 15 are operational. The company mentioned exports of about 18 per cent to us.

“If we were to follow what was exposed, it is likely more than that.

“But according to the facts provided by our attaché there, it is 18 per cent,” he told reporters today in Putrajaya today.

The Malaysian Muslim Consumers Association (PPIM), along with Pertubuhan Kemasyarakatan Rakyat (Pekemas) and Sahabat 99 revealed the SOP violation by TFI which had gotten prior approval from the Islamic Development Departmenr (Jakim).

Pekemas president Faizan Mohd Nor said flouting of the SOP was based on video evidence and photographs, and further strengthened by a witness, said to be a TFI abattoir staff, who was confident that there was an obvious breach of the slaughtering protocols.

Jakim has suspended TFI’s slaughtering approval with immediate effect until the results of a comprehensive probe are obtained.

Asked if the supply of beef from the abattoir had reached our shores, Idris said he could not assure action would be taken on supplies that arrived prior to the suspension.

Idris said Jakim was still tracking down the informant, known only as “The Hood Man”, who had tipped off PPIM.

He urged the informant to cooperate with Jakim so verified information can be directly obtained instead of from a second party.

“According to the information, there was an officer who managed to contact him and said that he would call us back, but we have not heard from him.

“The informant is said to be a Somali and we want complete information from him,” he added.

Article by: New Straits Times