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I know that Islam has many of the same rules about meat that we do, though also some important differences (like that they allow some non-kosher species). I've heard that in towns where halal meat isn't available they can eat kosher meat. If the situation is reversed and it's the kosher meat that's not available to a small Jewish community, is it less bad for a Jew to eat halal if the species is kosher? Or is it no better than any other meat that didn't have proper sh'chita?

Halal meat isn't kosher, but perhaps there are degrees of "bad" with it being less bad to eat halal than some other non-kosher meat. Or perhaps all non-kosher meat is equally bad so there's no point in somebody trying to mitigate his meat-availability problem with halal meat.


This question is based on another that was asked and deleted. I ask it to allow a better place to put an answer that was moved in a merge I shouldn't have done. I apologize to those involved.

  • The following offers a comparison between kosher and halal from an Islamic perspective: theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/… Seems on most points the laws of kashrut are far more stringent than those of halal. Since many Jews who observed kashrut reject more lenient hekhsher such as Triangle K, halal certainly would be rejected as well. If we can prove that halal is consistent with Triangle K standards, it may suffice for many. I am unaware of agencies that certify halal to assure adherence with Islamic law – JJLL Mar 31 '17 at 21:27
  • But, more specific to the OPs question, I am aware that the Conxervative Movement created a hierarchy of foods one may eat when no kosher certified foods are available. I don't believe cOosing halal over other non-Kosher sources of meat was addressed. – JJLL Mar 31 '17 at 21:33
  • even if the standards were the same in thoery, to be kosher the animal must be slaughtered by someone Jewish – Laser123 Mar 31 '17 at 22:38
  • duplicate of this question... judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/26688/… ? – Laser123 Mar 31 '17 at 22:40
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    @Laser123 that question asks if halal has the status of kosher. This asks if, where kosher isn't available, it's better to eat halal than other meat. – Monica Cellio Mar 31 '17 at 22:41
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This is from the original question that this was asked about being in a small community very far away (think Texas or Alaska and the distances between communities in that state) from any source of kosher food (especially meat). The OP asked if Hallal would be preferable to regular non-kosher meat. The OP also mentioned eating fish in the original question, which is why I mentioned getting kosher fish from a regular fish market.

As part of my answer, I point out that kosher food can be shipped anywhere in the United States (which was also specified in the original question).

The hallal is just as much neveilah as any kosher species meat slaughtered by any other non-kosher butcher and just as forbidden. As I explain in Why is meat only kosher if a Jew slaughters the animal?, even if a non-Jew slaughters under the supervision of Jew who makes sure that everything was done properly, the meat is still forbidden as neveilah.

Similarly, you would need to check on how to get kosher fish products from a general fish market. One way would be to get kosher fish (fins and scales) and use your onwn (kosher) knife for the clerk to scale and cut the fish.

There are national brands that have a hechsher that you can find in your local supermakets. There are national brands that you can order to be shipped to you if they are not in your local stores.

Google is your friend. I did a search on Texas ship kosher meat to home and got a number of links to different stores that will send it to you. Note that since I do not need to do this, I cannot verify the kashrus or quality of any of the stores that have these web sites. When you do a google, you would also get non-Kosher ads as well, so you need to double check who they are and what hechsher they have.

For example

AviGlatt.com

You don't have to live in an area where Aviglatt.com is
Aviglatt.com Offers home delivery to get the best food at the best prices to ANYONE ANY WHERE in the U.S.A
How it works
Sign up, browse our site for your favorite foods, and complete Checkout to place your order.
You may place an order up to one week in advance.
Order cutoff for next-day is 5 p.m. no shipping on weekend

New YorkKosherSteaks.com

Shipping

We strongly believe that the best steaks are fresh steaks, so we go to great lengths to ensure that our steaks reach your door without ever being frozen. All of our steaks are packaged in a vacuum-sealed bag allowing for it to retain freshness during the course of shipping. They are then placed in an insulated box with frozen gel packs to ensure that the meat is kept fresh from our door to yours.

All of our packages are shipped FedEx Ground, Express Saver, Standard Overnight or 2nd Day delivery. We package our shipments to withstand additional shipping time to make sure that they arrive fresh. We do not allow shipments to last longer than 3 days, so if your location is enabled for FedEx Ground, this guarantees that your package will arrive in 3 days at the most.

Because of these conditions, no signature is required for our delivery and they will be left at your door. If there are specific instructions for your deliveryman, please write them in the comments box on your checkout page. We do not ship over weekends, so orders placed after Thursday at 10 AM EST will ship on the following Monday. Shipping Rates

For FedEx Ground Shipments, we have a flat-rate that is based on weight. For orders under 60 lbs., the cost of shipping is $22, and for packages over 60 lbs., the cost is $42 because we will need to split the package into 2 boxes. Keep in mind that the shipping weight factors in the frozen gel packs and cooler box that are included in the shipment.

The shipping rates for Express Saver, FedEx 2nd Day and Overnight orders are weight-based. A price is specifically generated for your order and that will be presented during your checkout. The weight of any such item can be found on its detail page.

  • What if you live in a country which doesn't allow international shipping? – Shmuel Brin Mar 31 '17 at 23:45
  • @ShmuelBrin That is another matter. Each country is different. The original question dealt with the U.S. In some countries, one must travel to wherever kosher slaughter is done or arrange for a kosher slaughterer to come to the local community. There was a case in 19th century United States (when such shipping did not exist) where someone got himself trained to perfom shechitah for his family. In Spain for an example, the rabbi travels to the local communities. There are also problems in Switzerland. Each country is different and must consult with the local rabbis. – sabbahillel Apr 2 '17 at 0:51
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As sabbahillel pointed out, there's a great site that highlights the differences between ḥalāl and kosher meat.

They highlight the various problems of ḥalāl that render the meat treif - i.e. it's not a kosher slaughtering, and thus is no different from regular non-kosher meat.

So to answer your question: unless you can ascertain these all issues are taken care of, there's no difference between ḥalāl and regular non-kosher meat.

These issues are:
(Copied & pasted with minor edits, for future reference in case the site goes down)

  • Halakhic law specifies which types of fats and nerves are prohibited. The majority of madhhabs allowed the Muslim to consume these parts that are typically not considered kosher after a Jewish slaughter. The only exception to this is the Mālikī school, which deems the consumption of these parts impermissible.

    • Gid hanashe - the sciatic nerve needs to be properly removed

    • The various Chelev - non-Kosher fats need to be removed

  • Creatures that are prohibited for Jews but allowed for Muslims include: Sharks, shellfish and crustaceans (lobster, crabs, etc.) [Note: for the Ḥanafīs these animals are also not permitted]. Some types of birds (e.g., ostrich, emu). Camels (because it does not have a proper ‘split hoof’).
  • Jewish law forbids mixing meat and dairy products together. There is no equivalent in Islamic law.
  • Non-Kosher utensil need to be properly kashered. Islamic law, on the other hand, would only require the regular washing of any such utensil and would permit its subsequent usage to cook or consume ḥalāl products in.
  • Jewish law requires a specific type of person (called a shochet) to slaughter. Typically, the shochet is an observant male Jew trained in the practice of slaughter. Islamic law allows any male or female Christian, Muslim or Jew to sacrifice as long as that person follows the proper procedure of slaughtering. Therefore, it is primarily for this reason that a dhabīḥa animal can never be kosher for observant Jews because the slaughter would be performed by a Muslim.
  • The perfection of the knife blade – Jewish law requires visual and physical inspection; Islamic law only requires a sharp knife even if there are some imperfections (e.g., minor abrasions and nicks would be permissible in Islam).
  • Jewish law requires one continuous stroke for a slaughter (moving the knife back and forth would be allowed), whereas Islamic law would prefer one stroke, but the slaughter would not be invalidated if the slaughterer quickly followed a first improper stroke with another one.
  • In Jewish law, the knife must be at least two times the size of the animal’s neck, and perfectly straight, whereas there is no such requirement in Islam.
    (Not sure he's right about the perfectly straight - Danny)
  • Jewish law completely forbids stunning, and a stunned animal would be treif; Islamic law is not unified on this point, as most authorities would consider stunning makrūh, but as long as the animal is alive and has a pulse, the slaughter would still be considered ḥalāl.
  • Depending on which Islamic madhab one followed, the number of passages in the neck of the animal cut might be less for some opinions of Islamic law (however, a perfect cut in both religious would require the esophagus, trachea, arteries and jugular).
  • While the disconnecting of the spine is prohibited in both laws, in Jewish law this would render the animal treif, whereas according to the majority opinion in Islamic law, this is makrūh but does not render the animal ḥarām (note that some authorities would view such an act as making the animal ḥarām).
  • Jewish law requires a visual inspection of the lungs and some other internal organs of the animal after slaughter. Specific defects associated with these organs makes the animal treif, whereas the total absence of any imperfection (i.e., adhesion-free lungs) renders the animal a higher level of kosher, called glatt kosher. If such a level of perfection was not achieved, but the procedure was followed, the meat would merely be kosher. And some type of defects would, in fact render the animal treif even after proper slaughter. There is no equivalent to such a post-slaughter examination in Islamic law.

In addition, I would add:

  • Kashering - meat needs to be salted in a specific way before it is deemed kosher.
  • Bishul Akim - meat cooked by non-Jews is not kosher.

Conclusion: regular halāl slaughtering only resembles sh'chita from a distance - they both require a knife to cut off the head. The 5 critical forbidden techniques (i.e. pausing, pressing, digging, location and tearing - see link for details) are totally missing along with a host of minor issues - all which render the meat teif - 100% non-kosher and different from non-ḥalāl meat.

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