The continued growth of the halal economy has been remarkable to see in recent years. Today, most estimates place the value of the global halal sector at over $3.6 trillion (£2.7 trillion). In the UK, halal has offered a £1 billion boon to the economy, with UK Muslims contributing over £31 billion to the UK economy across all sectors. All told, it is estimated that the halal economy in Europe alone will grow between 10 and 20% year-on-year.
There are many reasons for the growth of the halal economy, all of which contribute to the generation of such staggering sums of money.
There are currently 2.8 million Muslims living in the United Kingdom alone, which instantly creates a demand for halal products. While many previously could only buy such products from specialty providers, this increased demand has resulted in halal going mainstream. Most supermarkets now stock chilled halal foods alongside other goods, which helps the overall halal economy grow.
Trust in the Product
An often-underestimated factor in the growth in halal is trust in the product. This extends beyond Muslims and into the non-Muslim sector. Take halal meats as a great example. The tenets of halal ensure that livestock and cattle do not receive any chemical modification and are reared to be as comfortable and healthy as possible prior to slaughter.
You’ll note many parallels there between the halal and organic markets. Though they are not the same thing, both have strict criteria for a meat if it is to receive the relevant certification. These criteria appeal to those who pay more attention to what goes into their food, be they Muslim or not. As such, halal products have started to prove popular with some segments of the non-Muslim population, which only goes to increase demand further.
Many restaurants and businesses that cater to tourists have gained increased awareness of halal and the need to cater to those who want to consume halal products. We have seen this in nations such as Japan and Korea, which have taken the initiative of creating more halal-friendly restaurants that allow them to attract tourism from Muslim countries.
This is a trend seen all around the world. The United Kingdom caters extremely well for those who eat halal in this regard. There are many restaurants that offer such foods. The key here is meeting the demand of tourists, which in turn leads to more money being pumped into countries’ economies by way of halal products.
It Stretches Further Than Food
Many people think of food when they hear the term “halal”. However, halal applies to many products beyond food. There are halal cosmetics and fashions, all of which have also experienced growth that has contributed to the overall expansion of the halal economic sector.
The increasing trend towards and mainstream acceptance of Islamic fashion – often referred to as modest fashion – is just the start. Many now look to the halal certification on medicines and cosmetics as a trust signal. As such products become increasingly mainstream, they will contribute to the growth of the halal economy.