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The emergence of halal food industry in non-Muslim countries: a case study of Thailand

Mohd Saiful Anwar Mohd Nawawi (Department of Fiqh and Usul, Academy of Islamic Studies, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
Mohd Fauzi Abu-Hussin (Academy of Islamic Civilization, Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Johor Bahru, Malaysia)
Muhamad Syazwan Faid (Academy of Contemporary Islamic Studies, MARA University of Technology, Shah Alam, Malaysia)
Norhidayah Pauzi (Department of Fiqh and Usul, Academy of Islamic Studies, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
Saadan Man (Department of Fiqh and Usul, Academy of Islamic Studies, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
Noratiqah Mohd Sabri (Academy of Islamic Civilization, Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Johor Bahru, Malaysia)

Journal of Islamic Marketing

ISSN: 1759-0833

Article publication date: 5 August 2019

Issue publication date: 23 June 2020

Abstract

Purpose

The paper aims to explore the development of the halal industry in Thailand. It endeavours to investigate the main factors behind the country’s success as one of the largest exporters of halal-certified foods and products in the Southeast Asian region, in spite of the fact that Thailand is a non-Muslim-majority country. Only 4.3 per cent of the 69-million population of Thailand is Muslims.

Design/methodology/approach

In articulating the issue objectively, qualitative research method was adopted. This paper used structured literature study by analysing various subjects of halal pertaining to Thailand’s halal sector. At the same time, several in-depth interviews with the corresponding halal authorities in Thailand, as well as site visits, were also conducted. We also undertook observations in several sites in Thailand to analyse the issue further.

Findings

Findings from the research show that the strong presence of Thailand in the global halal industry is because of its bustling tourism industry that helps to bolster the country’s halal branding, its uniformity of halal definition and standards and effective support to the local SMEs.

Practical implications

This research implies that the standardisation of halal in a country is imperative in the Muslim-majority or Muslim-minority countries. This study gives a benchmark for the non-Muslim-majority countries which endeavour to embark on the halal industry. Muslim-minority counties that envision to succeed in the global halal market could emulate Thailand’s approach in branding itself as a recognised non-Muslim-majority country in producing certified halal foods and products.

Originality/value

The paper provides guidelines and standards for Muslim-minority countries that envision success in the global halal market.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank University of Malaya and the Ministry of Higher Education for research-grant approval and financial support. The research is received funds from the University of Malaya Research Grant (RP027A-15HNE) and FRGS-MOHE Grant (FRGS/1/2016/SS01/UTM/02/6).

Citation

Mohd Nawawi, M.S.A., Abu-Hussin, M.F., Faid, M.S., Pauzi, N., Man, S. and Mohd Sabri, N. (2020), "The emergence of halal food industry in non-Muslim countries: a case study of Thailand", Journal of Islamic Marketing, Vol. 11 No. 4, pp. 917-931. https://doi.org/10.1108/JIMA-05-2018-0082

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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