Islam, Halal and Australia

The roots of Islam in Australia goes back to 1650s when Muslim fishermen from coasts of East Asia started trade with the native Australian. Then after the European settlement in Australia in 17th century, Muslims labourers, cameleers and farmers were brought in for the basic infrastructural development. Later and since 1960s especially after the abolition of White Australia Policy in 1973, professionals, educationists, skilled and non-skilled Muslims from Asia to Africa started to migrate to Australia and made Australia their permanent home.

Today, Islam is the fastest growing religion in Australia. Over ½ million Australian Muslims are now the integral part of Multicultural Australia. Mosques, Islamic Centres, Islamic Schools and Islamic Business are the primary part almost in every major cities and towns.

Today, where the Worldwide Halal market is valued at $2.1 trillion, in Australia, it is worth about $8.5 billion, $1.5 billion of which is only in the Halal meat industry. Australia is one of the largest halal meat suppliers to the Islamic countries including largest Muslim nation and next door neighbour – Indonesia and a popular halal destination – Malaysia.

The Australian Halal industry not just limited to food, meat or beverage, it is an elevatingeconomy in almost every field whether it may be general merchandise, daily consumables,fashion, finance, banking, tourism, music, art and craft.

According to the Global Islamic Economy Indicator (GIEI) report 2015-2016, Australia ranks as the Top 5 exporter countries in the Halal Food Export industry. Muslim consumers’ spending on food and lifestyle has reached $1.8 trillion in 2014 and is projected to reach $2.6 trillion in 2020. Therefore, the importance of Halal Expo Australia has been high in demand by all Australians.

The Australian Halal industry does not have the bright prospect for Australian exporters it is an evolving and merging trade for international Halal Business & Services across the globe.

There was an immensely encouraging response to the Halal Expo Australia from the first Halal Expo Australia held in 2015 in Sydney where tremendous interest was demonstrated by the local Halal business and industry players and over 10, 000 people visited this one-day event. Therefore, in 2016, we organised 2 one-day events in the two major cities of Sydney and Melbourne. These events made a record history of success. Over 10, 000 visitors attended each event experienced over 100 exhibits, local and international of variety of Halal Products & Services in each event. The last two years’ successive events have spurred the organisers to renewed action on this front. (By Syed Atiq ul Hassan, Director, Halal Expo Australia 2017)

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