AUCKLAND, Oct. 21, 2009 (News Agencies) .
New Zealand's Food Safety will shortly release a new national export standard covering halal meat processed for Muslim markets, Radio New Zealand reported today.
The new standard comes in the light of two recent trade controversies which had drastically affected the sales of sheep meat and beef to the Islamic world.
Halal beef exports to Malaysia have been restricted for several years and Indonesia introduced new conditions this month after shipments there were blocked for a short time earlier this year.
FSA market access director Tony Zohrab says the on-going Malaysian difficulties influenced the decision to get the agency involved in the halal certification process and development of an export standard.
To meet the new export standard, processors will have to have an approved halal programme.
Certifying bodies will also have to be approved by the FSA, its Islamic advisory council and the Islamic authorities of importing countries.