Difference Between Kosher and Halal

Although people are familiar to an extent, with the religious reasons behind these terms, there continues to be constant confusion regarding the overall meaning of Kosher and Halal.

Kosher vs Halal

The main difference between kosher and halal is that Kosher is based on Jewish principles and, Halal is based on Islamic principles. Kosher and Halal are religious laws of Islam and Judaism preaching the appropriate way of consuming and avoiding meat. The roots of these Kosher and Halal rules are present in the ancient texts of the Torah and Quran. 

Kosher vs Halal

The term Kosher is frequently heard in the European region. It is part of the Kashrut, a set of religious laws about diet and meat consumption, followed by the Jewish population.

Halal is one of the most popular terms around the globe related to meat consumption. The widespread popularity of the term Halal attributes it to the large global population following the Islamic religion.

Comparison Table Between Kosher and Halal

Parameters of ComparisonKosherHalal
ReligionKosher is a part of the Kashrut law from Judaism.Halal is as per the principles of Islam.
DefinitionThe definition of Kosher is ‘proper’ or ‘fit’ by ancient HebrewThe meaning of Halal is ‘permissible’ or ‘lawful’.
AlcoholIt allows the intake of alcohol, prepared according to Kosher law.It strictly prohibits the intake of Alcohol by Islamic law.
SeafoodAllows seafood of animals that possesses scales and fins.It allows the consumption of seafood prepared by halal.
CombinationKosher strictly prohibits the combination of dairy and meat.Halal allows the mixture of dairy and milk.

 What is Kosher?

Kosher is a famous term among the Jewish population and generally in the European region. The term Kosher denotes the law followed in the Judaism religion regarding diet and meat consumption.

The definition of the term Kosher is ‘proper’ and, these laws are preached by the ancient Jewish text Torah. Some important allowed and disallowed food according to the Kosher law is explained below.

  • The creatures from freshwater and saltwater that possess both scales and fins are allowed to be consumed by the law.
  • Except for pork, all meat from animals on land is allowed. But only if the land animal possesses cloven hooves and if it chews the cud.

Kosher law also asks to follow a procedure of prayer before the slaughter of livestock. The process of slaughtering must be quick and painless, according to the terms dictated by Kosher law.

What is Halal?

It is impossible to skip the term Halal-cooked and Halal-processed in a restaurant or a meat shop. The word Halal can be defined as lawful.

Halal is also a method of slaughtering and consuming meat according to Islamic dietary laws. Some significant aspects of Halal processing are mentioned below. 

  • The slaughterer of the livestock must be a follower of the Islamic religion.
  • It requires mandatory prayer before slaughtering the animals.
  • The knife needs to be sharp, as it would make the process quick and minimize the pain.

Islam allows all seafood and land animals to be consumed, except for pork which is strictly forbidden according to Quran. Additives from any of the banned food or alcohol are not considered halal by Islam.

Main Differences Between Kosher and Halal

  1. Kosher meat is allowed for preparation and consumption by halal, but halal meat is not allowed for the Kosher process.
  2. Only sea creatures with scales and fins are allowed to be consumed by Kosher law. All the sea creatures can be consumed according to Halal law.
Difference Between Kosher and Halal

Conclusion

The terms Halal and Kosher are some of the most confusing terms with relation to food and preparation. Though there exists a general idea of the religious reasons behind these terms, there is no clear understanding of the processes.

Kosher is a set of laws regarding food preparation and consumption based on the principles of Judaism and is followed by the Jewish population.

References

  1. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1541-4337.2003.tb00018.x
  2. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.05.021
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