The End - 2000 to 2009

So I got an email which linked to this blog post here on the blog saying Costco sells Halal lamb. At first, I didn’t believe it, because for some reason whenever I see emails/blog-posts without sourcing to any website makes it seem shady. So I consulted my Shaykh (Sh. Google) and he gave me wonderful responses, mashaAllah! I found the Australian Lamb Company‘s website and I contacted them myself. I received two responses from two different people:

The first person was Peter Gilligan who said:

Having been to Australia I will share with you my observations.

First of all, the lamb is treated very humanely during the entire process. The slaughter floor itself has an arrow painted on the ground pointing toward Mecca. When the lamb reaches the Muslim slaughter man it is presented to Allah, a prayer is recited and with a single cut with a very sharp knife the lamb is then bled. I am of the understanding that at this point the lamb is considered Halal slaughter.

Should you need further information I am available to you.

Kind regards,


Here is the second email from Marybeth Laleman who said:

Hello Sir,

I can only speak for the lamb produced and imported by the Australian Lamb
Company Inc (USA) and LTD (Canada). The largest retailer of Australian Lamb
in the US and Canada is Costco Wholesale.

The Australian Lamb Company Inc/LTD is the producer and importer of the
Kirkland Signature brand of lamb for Costco Wholesale. All of the lamb
produced for Costco is halal.

The lambs are handled in a humane manner, are presented towards Mecca to
Allah as a prayer is recited by a Muslim slaughter man who ensures only a
single cut with a very sharp knife is used. Subsequently, the product is
certified Halal. You can consume lamb purchased at Costco with confidence is
its meeting the halal standard.

The master cartons that Costco receives do have an MS (Muslim Slaughter)
legend on them with the accrediting authority noted. The individual packages
do not carry a MS legend, but they will in the future. Further over site is
ensured by AQUIS, the Australian Government equivalent to the USDA.

The following was copied then pasted from the website.

Halal Slaughter

The Muslim consumer market is very important to the Australian meat
industry. Australia has a Government Supervised Muslim Slaughter System
(AGSMS) which ensures high quality product that is strictly Halal (“lawful”
in Arabic). Australia is recognized as a world leader in Halal meat
production. For its success, the AGSMS relies heavily upon the involvement
and expertise of various Islamic organizations. These organizations are
licensed to supervise, inspect and certify all Halal meat and meat products
by the Australian Quarantine Inspection Service (AQIS).

Halal meat must have a program which complies 100 percent with AGSMS
guidelines. All Halal meat processing facilities must submit to regular
AGSMS inspections:

Processors may only employ registered Muslim slaughter men. Haram
(“unlawful”) meat may not be processed in the same area as Halal product
Halal and non-Halal product must be adequately separated and identified at
all times Equipment must be thoroughly cleaned and washed if non-Halal meat
has been in contact Only genuine Halal products may be issued a Halal
certificate and only by recognized Islamic organizations.

Hopefully this answers most of your questions.
Thank you very much for your patronage.

Marybeth Laleman
Australian Lamb Company

Now the question is why do they have to point it towards Mecca? All I know is that you simply just slaughter the animal with a sharp knife at the neck killing it instantly without any pain and suffering. Maybe they were confused when the butchers faced Mecca to pray.

Well anyways upon visiting another Austrialian Lamb website here, I came across the “Halal Slaughter” text, Marybeth was talking about (Scroll down to the bottom of the page to find it).

They also had a list of vendors in the United States that sold it and most of the common ones I recognized in NY and MD (since I claim both states as home now) were Costco, Giant, Safeway and Stop & Shop.  The full list can be found here.  Here is a list of all the Halal exporters of meat from Australia.

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  • 26 Responses for "Australian Lamb is Halal! Costco, Giant, Safeway, Stop & Shop and others sell it"

    1. iMuslim August 5th, 2008 at 1:48 pm


      How hard is it for US folks to get halal meat in cities with a significant Muslim population? I was lead to believe that it was quite difficult, but the situation may be different now (especially with this recent news).

      In the UK, Muslim populated cities (e.g., London, Leicester, Manchester, Brum, Preston, Blackburn, etc etc) have a good number of local Muslim butchers. In recent months, major supermarket chains are even stocking halal meat, and frozen food products in certain stores.

      I have always had easy access to halal meat via these avenues, alhamdulillah. I didn’t realise how much of a blessing this truely is, until I travelled to a couple of mainland European destinations – I am glad I only stayed a few days, cos I couldn’t survive on a purely veggy diet for long (plus how ‘veggy’ the meals were in certain establishments, I am not sure, subhanallah).

    2. ahmad August 5th, 2008 at 2:47 pm

      halal meat.. will it ever have competitive prices?

    3. anon August 5th, 2008 at 3:28 pm

      let’s not take away the livelihoods of muslim owned businesses unless we really feel the need to do so…

    4. iBO August 5th, 2008 at 3:38 pm

      only problem is that….after the halal Australian Lamb meat comes to local market (S&S in my case), they cut it into small pieces using the same blade or knife that they also use to cut pork and other meat… 🙁

    5. Yaser August 5th, 2008 at 4:34 pm

      great point iBO. this should be investigated someone who is willing to do so and bring it up with the people.

      i kind of also agree with anon. i also think believing hands should handle meat – otherwise barakah is kind of drained. wallahu a’lam

    6. MR August 5th, 2008 at 4:51 pm

      @anon, @iBO, @Yaser – I agree that we should support Muslim-owned halal meat stores, but you have to remember that the majority of the Muslim American population buys haram meat from supermarkets and are located quite far from halal meat stores. This is a major issue for many people. Also non-Muslims also handle the halal meat that is found in Muslim-owned halal meat stores. I’ve been to one halal meat store in Long Island, NY and Rockville, MD and both of them were Muslim-owned but had Latino’s cutting the meat. Another aspect is that although the meat is halal, many halal stores will probably fail city and state inspections due to their uncleanliness. Corporate supermarkets are much cleaner. Although I have seen a few halal meat stores that are very clean, like the one in Rockville, MD.

    7. H. Ahmed August 5th, 2008 at 6:58 pm

      COSTCO is awesome! Ive always loved costco and try to get everything from there!

      And compared to most other retail stores/supermarkets/etc. – costco ranks at or near the best in terms of wage/benefits for its employees, environmental issues, etc.

      And yaser- barakah drained by meat by having non-muslims hold it – hmm… that sounds shady. Kosher meat has to be always handled only by Jews – but Halal meat has no such restrictions. I also believe that there is greater barakah in food from animals raised in a healthy environment, given healthy food, cut via the zabihah method, and even barakah in the preparation of the food by a loved family member, etc. – i doubt ur losing much barakah by having a non-muslim cut it into pieces or pack it onto a bag 😛

    8. Adeel August 5th, 2008 at 10:18 pm

      Shoprite on 347 in Hauppauge just recently created a Halal meat section. It looked like unfortunately most of it was still there as the expiration date approached. If you’re in the area go out and support their decision.

    9. Yaser August 5th, 2008 at 10:57 pm

      khayr in shaa` Allah.

    10. Tim August 6th, 2008 at 4:05 am

      I think I’ll carry on getting mine from – I really am not comfortable with industrialised meat production. When there is no meat, I’ll eat veggie.

    11. PM@work August 6th, 2008 at 11:25 am


      MHO, more outfits selling halal meat the better it is for the greater muslim community. Most muslims I know (not including my family) eat Supermarket meat as previously stated.

      One other factor to consider is the price of the meat. If price is comparable to non-zabiha meat that make it even sweeter because it creates choice for the muslim consumer/public to choose from.

      So to sum up, Halal meat at a local supermarket at a comparable price = two thumbs up!!!

      We are not Jews so don’t bring in the whole non-muslims touching it. Please if you want to get that picking, please open up your own farm and become a slaughtermen/slaughterwomen. Be reasonable in everything you do. Islam is reasonable! Once again just MHO 🙂

      Wa salaam,

    12. Naveed Shariff August 6th, 2008 at 12:54 pm

      As per MHO, I would add to say that if we do not support such things, then they would discontinue such commodoties as it is simply supply-demand. On the other hand we could very soon have lot more Halal commodities in the US market/stores.


    13. Mark August 6th, 2008 at 12:57 pm

      Just don’t worry about it. As long as they are treating the animals well, everything is fine. All that stuff about mecca and such is claptrap from the medieval days. We live in today’s world, not yesterday’s.

    14. MR August 6th, 2008 at 3:27 pm

      @Mark – I want to make it clear that facing Mecca has nothing to do with slaughtering an animal to make it halal. Muslims face Mecca when they pray. Thank you.

    15. Seeker August 6th, 2008 at 5:26 pm

      I’m from MD…which halal meat in rockville are you referring too? We have a lot in the area.

    16. EJ August 6th, 2008 at 5:26 pm

      I believe the baraka can be damaged by any rotteness anywhere along the line – and that includes muslim butchers having a bad day, but we need to already be internally stronger than that..

      I remember the days when tofu and organic food were not sold in “regular” stores, and people who wanted them were just nutcases. Being recognized as a “market” is good for muslims in general.

      And as good members of the community we should be in support of all of our local small businesses – whatever religion, in the best ways that we can.

    17. EJ August 6th, 2008 at 5:29 pm

      Oh yes, sorry. I also meant to say.: we are cautioned in our religion not to make any restrictions that are not already there. So, while an arrow certainly isn’t a requirement, any muslim in a large complex might need to know which way was Mecca – so he/she can make prayerful preparations.

    18. IshaQ Ahmed August 6th, 2008 at 5:46 pm

      Say Alhamdulillah,

      Allah has given another GOOD opp’ty to spread Islam in the West. Take this opp’ty to spread Islam. This way we can do DAWA to non-muslims.
      Many in Americans don’t know about HALAL and this way we can explain them why we eat Halal food and why we don’t eat HARAM food.

      Allah hu Akbar

    19. MR August 6th, 2008 at 5:55 pm

      @Seeker – I’m still new to the MD area. I’ll be honest, in terms of available halal food (espcially halal fried chicken), NY is much better. NY is better than most states anyway. It’s the Halal Meat store on Rockville Pike. I was introduced to it by my relatives down there. It’s near the Sadaf restaurant.

    20. Seeker August 11th, 2008 at 10:09 am

      Check out Pizza Roma in college park 🙂

    21. MR August 11th, 2008 at 2:28 pm

      @Seeker – Pizza Roma! Of course I’ve been there!

    22. alidost August 14th, 2008 at 12:47 pm

      for it to be halal, it must face Qibla, that’s a requirement.

    23. Faridullah Shah December 25th, 2008 at 11:34 pm

      The Executive Director
      Halal Meat Industry
      Request for appointment against 2% quota as a Butcher (Slaughter) reserved for disable person.

      Dear Sir,

      With due respect, it is stated that I am a young man of 34 years from Pabbi Nowshera Pakistan and have done Master Degree in Islamic Education. But unfortunately I cannot hear properly, witch rendered me in a disable category. I also registered with Social Welfare Council Peshawar and posses PCRDP form III.
      I belong to a butcher’s family therefore I learnt my beloved profession the slaughtering of animals according to the Islamic principals with his father after gaining the Master Degree in 2000. Meanwhile the government gave me a chance to serve in a government commission National Commission for Human Development NCHD as a Markaz Coordinator MC from July 2006 to July 2008. But the new government stopped the fund to the commission and become gratis.
      Now I am working with his father as a butcher (Slaughter) but according to my disability and entrust I want to see the butcher world especially halal butchers and learnt more about NVQ Level 3 Experience in Australia. Therefore decided to join a butcher industry as a halal butcher (Slaughter). Contrarily there are a lot of respect as well as job opportunities for disable people in the most civilized society of Australia.
      Forgoing in view your esteemed honor would be kind enough to consider my request congenially and provide me an opportunity to serve your Department in the above position and thanking you in advance.

      Yours Sincerely

      Farid Ullah Shah
      Village & P/O Pabbi Nowshera NWFP Pakistan
      Contact # +92 923 201362 +92 321 9755708

    24. Ammar September 2nd, 2009 at 11:33 pm

      but brothers u r forgetting one think when you go to muslim brothers store their meat is almost expired and smelly but kirkland produckt at costco is fresh and even looks tasty and you know what it si halal as read at the top of the page

    25. shafia February 24th, 2010 at 7:44 pm

      hi just wanted to ask. are the meat halal at costcos all over the world or just in specific areas?

    26. Peter P April 30th, 2010 at 2:54 pm

      Feel free to check out our website. We provide 100% Halal Fresh and Frozen Lamb directly from Australia..We bring containers into the USA and ship around the nation…
      You name it, Linnane can deliver

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