Choose what you will, but Zabiha clearly has more advantages over non-Zabiha meat available in supermarkets. Here are some MAJOR reasons why:
1. YOU CAN BE SURE THERE’S NO PORK IN IT
In the last few years, revelations of pork being mixed with meat have surfaced. According to Ahmad Sakr, Professor Emeritus of Food Science and author of “A Muslim Guide to Food Ingredients”, a group of prisoners in San Francisco sued the food industry after discovering this happened to the meat they were being served.
This type of an incident ensures NO Muslim can consume such beef or chicken, for example, which has been mixed with pork, as the consumption of pork is Haram.
A more recent and widespread example of this is found in an NBC Dateline consumer investigation report that aired last month.
Although in the United States it is illegal to sell “mixed meats” as pure ground beef, the report found it still takes place.
This mixing is called adulteration and it is considered a health hazard. Adulteration happens when lamb, poultry, and of special attention to Muslims, pork, are added to and sold as pure ground beef.
NBC Dateline went to small supermarkets, large chains and discount stores all over the U.S. that sell food. In each of the ten cities sampled NBC Dateline found supermarkets that failed the ground beef test.
2. SUPPORT MUSLIM BUSINESS
Buying Zabiha meat is an almost sure way to support a Muslim business. This way, you’re not only getting your next meal (or meals) by buying straight from a Halal grocery store, but you’re also helping another Muslim gain a livelihood. You’re giving back to the community more than you could if you bought your meat at the nearest supermarket.
Today, there are Halal grocery stores in virtually every major city in North America. These were, in most cases, the second type of “institution” established by Muslims on this continent after the mosque. After all, following our need to worship in the house of Allah and gather together in an Islamic atmosphere, what could be as important as eating in accordance with Islamic guidelines, not to mention buying the necessary spices to make Muslim meals from the Middle East and Indian subcontinent?
We should be giving them precedence, even if it means driving a little farther out of town, or paying an extra dollar or two for items.
3. ARE YOU SURE IT’S FROM THE PEOPLE OF THE BOOK?
And the clincher is this: in today’s farms and slaughterhouses, what guarantee does anyone have that the meat they are eating has been slaughtered by a Jew or a Christian?
There is not, to my knowledge, anything in any existing labor code in Canada or the U.S. which allows only Jews and Christians to slaughter meat in “regular” farms and slaughterhouses. That means, it could be ANYONE-Hindu, Sikh, atheist, agnostic, etc. cutting the meat you decide to eat.
So the the people whose meat we think we are eating (the Jews and Christians) may not even be directly involved in the slaughter of the meat.
4. ZABIHA IS AGREED UPON
While there are a few scholars who reluctantly allow some type of supermarket meat, all Islamic scholors agree that Zabiha must be preferred and is clear of all doubts.