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Halal branding – strategic marketing means, motives and opportunities

By Jonathan A.J. Wilson and Jonathan Liu


Within Muslim countries and especially those with Arabic as their mother tongue, many products which have previously taken their halal status as a given are beginning to carry halal labelling. Furthermore, it can be observed that non-Muslim countries, which have a significant and proactive minority population, are also increasing their halal product offerings. This is in stark contrast to historical practices of marketing such goods according to their ethnic, rather than religious heritage. In the first instance, this paper charts the rise in this phenomenon and examines the efficacy of such an approach. Collectively, these have culminated in the creation of halal ingredient brands and in some cases forms of co-branding. However, halal’s full potential has yet to be harnessed and there remain areas of dissonance and misunderstanding. Reasons offered by the authors are that current applications of brand theory unnecessarily restrict the term halal and presuppose that there is one interpretation of its meaning, which acts as a broad-brush panacea to all. In addition, as this is an emerging area of commerce, or at the very least a reinterpretation of a basic principle of permissibility; it is argued that current branding models are in need of refinement. This paper explores the strategic aspect of deploying Islamically-fused and overtly branded commodities, to diverse religious and non-religious audiences

Topics: BP, HF
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