This S’pore App Tells Users Whether A Product is Halal By Scanning Barcode or Ingredient List

Take a good look at the things around you – from your clothes to accessories and electronics, at least 70% to 80% of it is most likely made in China.

Image: Giphy

Sorry, I just had to add that in.

While I have no prejudice against imported products, step aside foreign talents, it’s time to #supportlocal.

And this is one of them.

What’s up WhatsHalal

Officially launched in February 2018, WhatsHalal aims to “create a Halal ecosystem that benefits both the merchant to consumers, locally and internationally.”

In addition, they intend to provide Halal-related information readily available for Muslims and reduce the time spent purchasing food.

Why?

Meals are a great concern especially for the Muslim community because they have to take into consideration whether the ingredients and preparation method is Halal-certified.

Eating is supposed to be fun, not stressful, and thanks to local brand WhatsHalal, mealtimes are made great again.

Image: Giphy

How?

According to Business Insider, there is now a mobile application capable of identifying if a food item is Halal-certified.

The app mainly offers food delivery service and has been around since 2018 but is recently said to come with an added function: a Halal scanner.

Before you get overly excited, I have to inform you that the updated version will only launch locally towards the end of April. This beta app is also slated to launch in Malaysia, Indonesia and Australia.

Halal Scanner

Image: WhatsHalal

This special scanner is true to its name.

Simply scan the food item’s bar code, product image or ingredients list and voilà you’ll know if the food is Halal-friendly.

Business Insider reported that the scanner relies on data collected by users with time. In other words, what Chief Operations Officer, Salehin said stands – “The more people scan, the more we build up product database”.

Product Image

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Users are required to snap a photo of the item via the app and the WhatsHalal Team will check for the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (Muis) logo on its packaging. If the logo is present, the item is Halal-certified.

Bar Code

Riding on the data gathered from the first few product images taken by users, subsequent users can then scan the bar code of the same product for immediate Halal verification.

Ingredients List

Image: WhatsHalal

If a product does not come with the Muis logo, users are required to scan the list of ingredients before WhatsHalal conducts an optical character recognition to analyze if the ingredients are Halal-friendly.


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Straightforward System

In an interview with Business Insider, Azman the CEO said that the system is very straightforward – it will immediately flash “halal” or “not halal” for obvious products like pork.

For products like gelatin which may or may not be obtained from halal-certified sources, more information such as the possible countries of origin will be provided.


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External halal consultants will be brought in to conduct thorough checks should there be an increasing number of concerns raised about a specific item.

Image: Giphy

With all that said, the Halal Scanner is only an informative tool and can’t guarantee if a product is truly 100% Halal-certified. Ultimately, users have to make the decision to purchase items themselves.

Psst, by the way, WhatsHalal is hiring! If you want to be part of their cause, check out their list of positions up for grabs.

If not, download the app which is available on both Google Play and Apple Store and get ready to contribute to a greater good.

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