US company denies supplying $5m non-halal beef to GCC
A US food supplier has been accused by federal prosecutors of supplying beef to several Gulf countries that it falsely claimed was halal produce, according to reports.
Midamar Corporation, based in Iowa, in Midwestern USA, denies that it supplied nearly $5 million worth of beef to Muslim customers in Malaysia, Kuwait and the UAE which was falsely marked as halal produce, UK-newspaper the Daily Mail reported.
Directors of the company, named as brothers Jalel and Yahya 'Bill' Aossey, have been charged this week by US federal prosecutors with nearly 100 counts of conspiring to make and use false statements and documents, sell misbranded meat and commit mail and wire fraud.
Its sister company, Islamic Services of America, which is approved to distribute to Malaysia, Indonesia, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and UAE, was also implicated in the action.
The Aossey brothers have pleaded not guilty and claimed “the [US] government has no right to regulate what is a religious matter.”
Midamar and Islamic Services of America claimed their beef produce sold in the GCC was slaughtered by hand by specially-trained Muslim slaughtering experts who always recited prayers during the process.
However, prosecutors claim the beef actually came from a supplier that used bolt stunning to kill cattle and the labels were removed by employees to cover up the real source of the meat, the report added.