9 Jun 2009

Indonesians clear beef held up over halal concerns

8:03 pm on 9 June 2009

New Zealand meat held at an Indonesian port for nearly three weeks over concerns it did not meet halal standards has been cleared.

Authorities in Jakarta impounded 76 shipments of frozen beef from New Zealand and Australia after Indonesia's Islamic Ulema Council sent them a letter apparently saying the beef did not meet its new standards.

But it has since become clear that the letter was just a warning that new halal standards would come into force in October.

Indonesia's department of agriculture has instructed officials to release the containers and to let in future beef imports from Australia and New Zealand without fuss.

Indonesia requires all imports of beef to be halal, namely processed from cattle slaughtered in a manner deemed suitable for consumption by Muslims.