Is McDonalds Japan Halal?

Oct 12, 2022Shopify API

Wondering is McDonalds Japan Halal? The short is no. Let's find out more about in detail if there are any specific McDonald's outlet in Japan that are halal certified.

One of the most challenging predicaments most Muslims face when traveling is looking for restaurants that serve Halal-friendly food.

While finding Halal food isn’t a dilemma in most countries, especially in the Middle East or South Asia, there are a few countries that don’t follow the concept of introducing Halal standards to restaurants or food-based industries due to no Halal accreditation organizations being established. 

Since fast food restaurants are the go-to for most tourists, most Muslim travelers are eager to know if fast food outlets in Japan offer Halal food and particularly if McDonald’s outlets in Japan serve Halal-friendly food.

And that’s what we’ll break down today, therefore make sure to read further below to find out if McDonald’s in Japan is Halal.

What Does Halal Mean In Islam?

Before we find out if McDonald’s in Japan serves Halal food let’s familiarize ourselves with the term ‘Halal’ and what classifies as ‘Halal Food’. 

Halal is an Arabic term that means ‘permissible’ in the English language and it’s an Islamic notion that distinguishes whether a thing or practice is allowed or restricted according to Islam.

Generally, the term Halal is used in the food industries, and practicing Muslims wish to know if the food is permissible to consume or not, especially when it comes down to meat and animal-based products. 

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Meat in Islam is deemed Halal if the animal is slaughtered in accordance with Islamic laws which includes using a sharp knife to cut the jugular veins and the throat and letting the animal bleed out completely while also uttering religious phrases. 

Poultry and red meat such as beef, mutton, venison, and lamb are permissible for Muslims to consume if the animals were slaughtered as prescribed by Islamic laws. In addition, most kinds of seafood are Halal by nature hence they don’t require undergoing religious slaughtering. 

The contrary term to Halal is ‘Haram’ which is Arabic for ‘forbidden’ and any food or practice that’s not classified as Halal, is considered Haram. Pork and alcohol are the most popular examples of Haram food and beverage in Islam.

Furthermore, any meat that’s not slaughtered in consonance with Islamic laws and even the by-products of such meat are forbidden for consumption. Hence, Muslims refrain from coming close to anything that’s Haram.

Is McDonald’s Japan Halal?

Does McDonald’s In Japan Sell Halal Food?

McDonald's in Japan in not certified halal.

The McDonald’s menu in Japan consists of burgers, side dishes, drinks, desserts, and coffee beverages. The burgers offered by the McDonald’s Japan menu are predominantly made from chicken, beef, fish, shrimp, and eggs. Some burger options also contain slices of bacon as well. 

is mcdonalds halal or haram
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Since bacon is made from pork we can conclusively rule out that any McDonald’s burgers containing pork are definitely not Halal.

While burgers made from chicken and beef are widely available on the McDonald’s Japan menu, some Muslims may think these burgers are Halal. Unfortunately, they’re not. 

This is because the beef and pork used to make McDonald’s burgers come from unknown sources hence the slaughtering process of such meat cannot be guaranteed to have complied with Halal standards.

Although McDonald’s outlets in Japan haven’t been vocal about whether their outlets adhere to Halal food standards, the Allergen and Nutritional List on McDonald’s Japan website gives us an insight into how McDonald’s prepares its meals.

If you look at the list you can view how pork is one of the ingredients used in McDonald’s meals. Furthermore, even seafood burgers such as Shrimp Filet-O, Filet-O-Fish, Bai Filet-O-Fish, etc use frying oil that was previously used for frying beef.

Since the beef utilized in McDonald’s meals are not Halal, the oil used for frying the meat isn’t Halal as well. 

Therefore, any McDonald’s meal that has come into contact with the frying oil is undoubtedly not Halal. 

What Halal Food Can I Get From McDonald’s In Japan?

Since there are no credible sources on where and how McDonald’s outlets in Japan obtain their meat, the burgers are definitely not Halal-friendly, besides pork is also a major ingredient that comes into contact with other meat products in McDonald’s. Therefore, even seafood burgers are doubtful of being Halal. 

However, let’s not lose hope because McDonald’s in Japan not only offers burgers but a range of other goodies as well.

There are side dishes in McDonald’s Japan such as Edamame and Corn, Apple and Cream, Petit Pancakes, etc that aren’t exposed to any used frying oil or other meat-based products.

is mcdonald's halal
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Hence you can still experience the taste of McDonald’s Japan by trying out these side dishes. Yet again you will have to skip the iconic McDonald’s french fries and hash browns from your meal choices since they’re fried in the same cooking oil used by beef and other meat products.

Moreover, some desserts served at McDonald’s Japan such as Oreo McFlurry and soft serve ice cream do not contain any animal-based ingredients except for milk and hence are Halal for consumption.

Some desserts use gelatin as an ingredient therefore make sure to check the Allergen List on the McDonald’s Japan website. 

And last but not the least, the drinks menu at McDonald’s Japan is halal-friendly since there’s no addition or availability of alcohol.

However, always check the Allergen List to ensure which meal or drink isn’t exposed to ingredients proscribed by Islam.

Are There Any Halal-Friendly McDonald’s Outlets in Japan?

McDonald’s is a renowned fast-food restaurant chain around the globe that has countless outlets operating across several countries. Currently, in Japan, there are over 2500 McDonald’s outlets functioning successfully. 

It’s common for Muslim tourists to find restaurants that serve Halal food even in non-Islamic countries, especially if a city of a particular country is highly populated with Muslims.

Tokyo is the city in Japan that holds the highest number of Muslim immigrants, hence you can find Halal restaurants all across Tokyo. 

is mcdonald's haram
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However, McDonald’s outlets in Tokyo and in the entirety of Japan aren’t Halal certified. Even if you find a McDonald’s that might be situated next to a Muslim neighborhood, the chances of the outlet being Halal certified are barely low.

Therefore, if you’re seeking to have a full meal that’s Halal, McDonald’s isn’t the ideal place for that. 

Alternatively, McDonald’s can just be a spot for you to get a small snack or a drink since most of these items aren’t affected by any meat-based ingredients. 

Will There Be A Halal McDonald’s In Japan?

For Muslim fast food lovers traveling to Japan, the news of McDonald’s in Japan not being Halal is downright unpleasant.

It’s also important to know that Halal is not a popular term or concept among the Japanese hence asking most Japanese people if there are Halal restaurants available in Japan will hardly get you a response. 

Furthermore, there are no Halal accreditation bodies in non-Islamic countries like Japan, especially where there’s only a small proportion of Muslims. Hence, it’s unlikely for a fast food restaurant like McDonald’s to be Halal-certified. 

Moreover, the practice of going Halal is deemed too expensive because the certificate has to be renewed annually if the restaurant prefers to be Halal-certified.

In addition, the costs of using separate storage space for ingredients to ensure they aren’t exposed to other non-Halal materials are costly as well.

Therefore, the odds of a Halal McDonald’s in Japan are unlikely, at least not in the near future. However, you can find other restaurants in Japan that offer Halal meals.

Are There Any Halal Accreditation Organizations In Japan?

For a commodity to be classified as Halal, it has to undergo several degrees of inspections beginning with checking the raw materials, their sources, and production processes.

These inspections are usually carried out by agents from the authorized Halal accreditation organization in a particular state or country upon the requests of a food manufacturing company or restaurant. 

is mcdonald's halal worldwide
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Once the restaurants pass the inspections based on Islamic dietary laws, they’re officially Halal-certified and are eligible to use the Halal logo on the packaging of their products. 

However, not all countries approve of such Halal certification organizations and there’s not a single Halal accreditation body in Japan.

For the most part, this is due to only a very small population of Muslims living in Japan. Hence, there aren’t many people to support the idea of inaugurating a Halal certification body. 

Furthermore, the concept of Halal food standards is alien to the Japanese people, therefore, not many pay heed to it. 

Is McDonald’s Japan Halal: FAQs

Is McDonald’s in Japan Halal?

McDonald’s is a popular fast-food restaurant chain that has over 2000 outlets in Japan. While McDonald’s restaurant outlets are Halal in most Middle Eastern and Asian countries, the McDonald’s outlets in Japan are not Halal-certified.

This is because there are no Halal accreditation organizations in Japan to officially recognize a restaurant as Halal.

Is Japan Halal-friendly?

Japan is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world and it welcomes tourists from all backgrounds and faith without any discrimination.

The capital city of Tokyo is packed with tourists from all over the world and consists of restaurants that cater to the tastes of all tourists.

There are a couple of Halal and vegetarian restaurants in Japan, especially in Tokyo and its outskirts. However, there’s no Halal accreditation organization in Japan to recognize if the restaurants are Halal.

Is it easy to find Halal food in Japan?

Halal food is relatively easy to find in major cities in Japan like Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, and Kobe. These big cities are quite popular among tourists hence there are several restaurants situated in these areas that can cater to the preferences of most tourists.

Most Halal food restaurants in such cities are run by Muslim immigrants from Indonesia, Malaysia, and Pakistan.

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