Compliance with the halal standards [food prepared according to Islamic law, free from pork products, alcohol and certain other ingredients] is not an indicator of product safety, Chairman of the Azerbaijani Food Safety Agency Goshgar Tahmazli said at a press conference in Baku on March 14.
Answering reporters' questions, Tahmazli said the Food Safety Agency does not plan to issue quality certificates for halal products. The Agency does not have the right to issue such certificates, he added.
"Laboratory studies can only reveal presence of pork meat or emulsion in the product. However, it is impossible to determine whether the product meets the halal standard. Citizens who are interested in this issue can get advice in religious structures," he said.
The Food Safety Agency was established by the decree of Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev on additional measures to improve the food security in the country.
Under the decree, the Food Safety Agency will help ensure the regulatory framework of food safety (development and approval of sanitary norms and rules, as well as hygienic standards), and will carry out risk analysis, hygiene certification, as well as provide a quality certificate for food products exported to foreign countries, ensure state control over the protection of the rights of consumers of food products and at all stages of food production on the basis of the "from field to table" principle.
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