Nestlé pushes for Malaysia to become global Halal hub

Nestlé Malaysia held their inaugural Halal Forum, emphasising the strong prospects of Malaysia as a leader in the global Halal industry.

The conference was themed ‘Malaysia, The Halal Centre of Excellence: A Flourishing Global Market’. Dato’ Seri Jamil Bidin, chief executive officer of the Halal Industry Development Corporation (HDC), a keynote speaker said the global Halal market is currently thriving with huge potential and untapped opportunities.

"This rapidly growing industry is currently estimated to be worth RM8.4 trillion annually, comprising both the food and non-food sectors. The Halal food sector alone is worth almost RM2.5 trillion, and is also one of the fastest growing segments in the global food industry,” Jamil added.

He explained that while the government has taken various initiatives to support the development of the Halal industry, the realisation of the country’s vision to be the regional and global hub for Halal products and services requires active participation by the private sector.

"It is crucial that multi-stakeholder collaborations are established in order to continue propelling Malaysia’s Halal industry to greater heights. Forums such as these which encourage the sharing of expertise and knowledge between Halal industry stakeholders such as Nestlé Malaysia, JAKIM, HDC and Puratos are vital as we aim to realise our vision,” he added.

Nestlé Malaysia pioneered the Halal standard for the Nestlé Group, and was one of the first food and beverage company to be certified Halal in Malaysia when the Government introduced the Halal certification in 1994.

Alois Hofbauer, managing director of Nestlé (Malaysia) Berhad, added there are strong prospects for the Halal F&B industry, especially with rising demand for Halal products, both regionally and globally.

"By sharing our resources, technical capabilities and best practices, we aim to facilitate the development of local suppliers to be able to compete in the global business environment, which will in turn elevate the standards of the local F&B industry. [...] In support of the Government’s vision of transforming Malaysian into a global Halal Centre of Excellence, it is vital that all stakeholders work together,” Hofbauer said.