Priced at €6,90 each or €125 for a packet of 25, a device, simply called “Halal test”, is designed for use by Muslims who, under the dietary requirements of their religion are forbidden from consuming pork and alcohol, Le Nouvel Observateur reported.
In a similar style to a pregnancy test, the device consists of a strip which the consumer must put into a glass of warm water containing a sample of food. After a few minutes, the test will then show one of two options: either a single bar for a negative test or two bars for a positive one, which means there is alcohol or pork present.
The test was created by the company Capital Biotech, founded by Franco-Algerian duo Abderrahmane Chaoui, a graduate in business and entrepreneur Jean-François Julien.
While no test currently exists which allows Muslims to verify if food really is Halal – i.e. it contains meat from an animal slaughtered according to Islamic ritual, Chaoui, 25, says the test is important to confirm “the absence of food products forbidden by the Koran”.
The tests will be especially helpful to Muslims when buying unlabelled food, the Algerian born Chaoui said.
“While traveling, if you go to a restaurant or order a meal to takeaway, the products aren’t always labelled,” he said.
The entrepreneurs are tapping into a potentially lucrative market. With France home to around six millions Muslims, the market for Halal food is estimated to be worth €5.5 billion a year.
Nevertheless, the business partners are optimistic that they will be able to one day create a test that will be able to determine how an animal was slaughtered based on the oxygenation of the blood.
Although Halal is a term normally applied to raw meat products, it can also refer to cooked meals, drinks, sweets and even cosmetic and pharmaceutical products.
Capital Biotech said it had received pre-orders for 10,000 testing kits within 24 hours of the launch.
Source: The Local