KUALA LUMPUR – The Malaysian Islamic Development Department (Jakim) today said the policy by McDonald’s Malaysia to allow only halal-certified cakes in its premises is consistent with its certification for food premises.

In the first public statement since the issue arose last week, the department pointed to the requirements for halal certification as contained in the Manual Procedure for Malaysia Halal Certification (Third Revision) 2014.

In section 5(5)(v) of the manual, it is stated that “Non-halal food/beverages are not allowed to be brought into the premise compound”.

“Jakim views the policy brought forth by McDonald’s to be a good initiative and strong commitment by the company in its halal assurance efforts at McDonald’s premises, based on the Halal Assurance Management System (HAS),” it said in a statement.

The department also claimed that the policy was not unique as other eateries also implemented a “no outside food” rule.

It is unclear how the rule is enforced by Jakim, and how it extends to outlets that also sell or serve alcohol.

Malay Mail Online is seeking further information from Jakim’s halal hub division director Dr Sirajuddin Suhaimee.

Last week, McDonald’s Malaysia confirmed that it has enforced a policy barring customers from bringing cakes without halal certification into its premises.

It later explained that the rule was a Jakim requirement, after the fast food chain came under criticism for the policy.

Attempts to confirm similar policies at other major chains have gone unanswered.

– Malay Mail