Halal Industry

Japanese halal certifier JHA eyeing increase in exports after GCC accreditation

| 15 February, 2017
Emmy Abdul Alim
Japanese halal certifier JHA eyeing increase in exports after GCC accreditation
Photo: Japan Halal Association booth at a halal trade fair in Malaysia. Courtesy Japan Halal Association

Japan Halal Association has become the first Japanese certifier to be accredited by the GCC Accreditation Centre (GAC).

JHA chairperson Hind Hitomi Remon told Salaam Gateway the association received confirmation of its accreditation from GAC on Jan 23 and it will formally receive the certificate in person on Feb 27. JHA’s accreditation will remain valid through Jan 22, 2019, said Remon.

She hopes the accreditation will increase export opportunities for Japan’s halal-certified companies and products.

“The GAC covers all six GCC countries plus Yemen. Most of our halal-certified companies want to export to GCC countries, including cosmetics. We have recommended they switch to our new system that complies with GAC standards,” said Remon.

JHA has certified more than 80 companies since its establishment in 2010, according to Remon. 98 percent are food companies, with the remaining 2 percent split between cosmetics and logistics companies.

“Although demand for cosmetics certification is increasing, at the moment there is only one company that we have certified,” said Remon.

JHA is also recognised by Malaysia’s JAKIM and is in the process of renewing its recognition from Singapore’s MUIS.

Photo: Some products certified by Japan Halal Association. Photo courtesy Japan Halal Association

Other Japan-based halal certifiers recognised by JAKIM as at Feb 6 this year are Japan Muslim Association, Japan Halal Unit Association, Japan Islamic Trust, Muslim Professional Japan Association, and Nippon Asia Halal Association.

Japan does not have a national-level halal certifier and there are currently around 20 active independent certifiers.

The GAC is a member of Dubai-based International Halal Accreditation Forum (IHAF) that aims to harmonise halal standards globally. Its other 19 members include the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation, Dubai Municipality and Dubai Accreditation Center, Entidad Nacional de Acreditacion (Spain), and Joint Accreditation System of Australia and New Zealand. Its full membership list can be accessed here.  

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