Universitas Airlangga through its Halal Center (Center for Halal Product Research and Development) held an international conference entitled 1st International Conference on Halal Research and Product Development (ICHRPD 2018) on Wednesday, September 26, 2018 at Wyndham Hotel Surabaya. The conference lasted for two days, on Wednesday and Thursday.
The conference on ” Insight of Halal Lifestyle and Product Development ” was the result of collaboration between UNAIR and Malaysia’s MSU (Management Science University). There were 34 speakers in the conference and the discussions were divided in five sessions.
The scholars were from Takushoku University, Japan; Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM); and MSU, Malaysia. There were also researchers from Indonesia, Sepuluh Nopember Institute; Surakarta IAIN; Gadjah Mada University; Maulana Malik Ibrahim State Islamic University, Malang; Diponegoro University; Muhammadiyah University of Sidoarjo; Semarang State University; Bogor Agricultural Institute; and Universitas Brawijaya, including from UNAIR and Sultan Agung Islamic Hospital.
Andang Miatmoko, Ph.D., D., Apt., as the head of the committee said that the conference was held to discuss halal product research, and as a medium towards potential collaborations between halal product researchers, both from inside and outside the country. UNAIR Halal Center has just been inaugurated this year.
“Not many institutions know that UNAIR has an institution that focuses on halal product research,” he said.
“Although it is relatively new, it (UNAIR Halal Center, ed) actively communicates and sends researchers to Ministry of Religious Affairs to study on halal product research, as well as to other institutions,” he added.
Andang also said that halal lifestyle has been trending in several aspects of life, especially for Muslim communities. Therefore, dissemination is needed within the framework of scientific discussions about research related to halal products in Indonesia and other countries, such as in Japan.
“Japan is one of the countries that focuses on halal product research. Although muslims are minorities, Japan has become one of the favorite destinations for muslims. So we need to know the research there as well, “he said.
On that occasion, Director of UNAIR Halal Center, Mustofa Helmy Effendi, said that the activity was part of the effort to develop public awareness on the importance of halal products. It is in accordance with the Act number 33 of 2014 concerning Guarantees of Halal Products which will be implemented on October 17, 2019.
“As a part of preparation, this conference is needed as an effort to disseminate public awareness, especially to share knowledge with developed countries such as Japan which focuses on halal products, “he said.
In fact, according to Helmy, Indonesia is a country with the largest Muslim population in the world. It was very different from Japan. Halal products have become a concern there. Through the conference, Helmy hoped UNAIR Halal Center is able to establish partnerships with halal researchers abroad. In the end, UNAIR Halal Center is also expected to be a reference for research on halal products in Indonesia, and internationally.
In addition, Indonesia needs to expand the industry for greater benefits. Helmy gave an example of providing halal tourism services, providing halal services for Muslim tourists as part of the source of state revenues.
“If it’s really prepared, this can be a source of state revenue. Therefore, people need to know about such facilities and services. On the other hand, related research is also a focus that needs attention, “he said.
Meanwhile, representing Rector of UNAIR, Prof. Ir. Moch. Amin Alamsjah, M.Sc., Ph.D., said that as an effort to improve the quality of halal products, UNAIR as a university participates and contributes through its research, practitioners and community service. One of them is through the establishment of Halal Center.
“Welcome to the international conference. Hopefully what we do here will bring the best contribution to the future, ” he said while opening the international conference.
The keynote speaker in the conference were KH M. Cholil Nafis, LC., MA., Ph.D. from the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI). He delivered a presentation entitled The Concept of Halal Toyyiba and Its Application . According to him, the concept of halal and haram in Islam is not only focused on the problem of food and drink. It is not only based on good and bad conditions. However, the concept of halal haram includes everything that is close to human activities.
“The purpose of it is for the good of humanity itself,” he said.
The speakers for the first session were from three countries, Japan, Malaysia and Indonesia. They were Director of the Shariah Researcher Institute Takushoku University Japan, Nordeen Nobuo Mori; Norhidayu Muhammad Zain from the Islamic Civilization Academy, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM); and Director of the Halal Center UNAIR Mustofa Helmy Effendi.
Nordeen delivered a presentation entitled The Important of Halal Certification in Japan . According to him, the halal certification is very important. Not only intended for Muslims as in Islamic or religious perspective it is mandatory. But from the scientific side, the content of halal products is indeed in good condition and has a positive impact on the human body. It means the concept of halal can also be valued as goodness in general.
The presentation was continued by Mustofa Helmy with an explanation entitled Establishing Halal Center in Academic Institutions . And final presentation was from Norhidayu entitled The Future of Halal Biomedical Devices . (*)