The New Zealand state has taken over the country’s leading halal certifier – and is now involved in the global halal business.
At the end of last year, the state-run food certifier Asure Quality aquired an 80 percent stake in the New Zealand Islamic Development Trust (NZIDT), reports Rural News. NZIDT is New Zealand’s leading provider of halal audit and certification services for the food industry.
Two years ago, New Zealand exported halal products worth 3.5 billion dollars, primarily meat and dairy products. NZIDT certification is crucial for food exporters to gain market access to Muslim countries. With the takeover, the New Zealand government also wants to further strengthen NZIDT’s market position through training.
The NZIDT should remain independent and continue to be run by Muslims. The previous owner Taoufik Elidrissi retained the remaining 20 percent of the company. State agencies in key Muslim markets of Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Malaysia and Indonesia have been informed of the takeover, according to the report.