Your Guide To Ordering Halal Meat Online – Everything You Need To Know

Naz HussainMar 31, 2021
Halal Meat Online - SaveCo Online

One of the most difficult aspects of ordering fresh meat online which has been ritually slaughtered has to be choosing a retailer to buy from.

Who can you trust?

Are they reputable?

Are they experts in their field and most importantly of all will my meat arrive in the freshest possible condition?

These are all valid questions which anyone who’s new to online meat delivery should ask themselves. And this is the very purpose of this guide. This is your one-stop place to find all the answers and more and we’ve done all the hard work and research for you.

So, sit back, relax and read on!…

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

 

  1. Finding a reputable online halal meat butcher

  2. Halal Certification

  3. Experience and Expertise

  4. Checking Online Reviews

  5. Read T&Cs

  6. The Ordering Process

  7. Dietary Needs and Nutritional Information

  8. Online Chat Support

  9. Taking Delivery

  10. Storing Meat Safely

  11. Cooking Meat Safely

 

FINDING A REPUTABLE ONLINE HALAL MEAT BUTCHER

It may appear to be a bit of a minefield at first but with some carefully researched steps you’ll be able to find a company you’re comfortable to order from.

 As part of your due diligence, you should check the following:

  • Their halal certification website (see below).
  • Any social media presence. Pay attention to any comments left by customers and how the company has responded.
  • Read their reviews (see below).
  • And last but not least, if they are known in their local community ask family or friends for feedback to get a general feel about them.

 

HALAL CERTIFICATION

The best way to verify a halal meat shop is by checking on their respective certification body’s website. Luckily, there are no shortage of approved halal certification companies in the UK. The two most popular certification bodies in the UK are HMC (Halal Monitoring Committee) and HFA (Halal Food Authority). 

The first thing to do when you come across an online butcher is to check if they are registered with an approved halal certification body. You can do this by either checking their website for a halal certification logo (you’ll probably find this in their butchery section landing page or a product page) or failing that, by searching the business name in the halal authority’s website directory.

HMC certified directory - SaveCo Online Blog
SOURCE: HALAL MONITORING COMMITTEE, HALALHMC.ORG/OUTLETS

Want to know more about what halal is? Read our blog: What is halal?

 

EXPERIENCE AND EXPERTISE

So how do you find the right retailer when you want to buy halal meat online?

A good place to start would be to find an existing, established butchers shop that also sells online, preferably one that you can visit to see exactly what their operation looks like. Not only can you question the butcher about their sources, the quality of their meats and the overall freshness but you physically see various aspects of the business that may give you a clue as to their reputation. Things to look out for are their local authority hygiene rating (this should be displayed by any reputable butcher otherwise you can ask to see it or simply type their business name in this website: https://www.scoresonthedoors.org.uk/ to see their rating), the look and appearance of staff, e.g. cleanliness and hygiene (such as clean aprons and hair nets) and the overall look and feel of the butcher’s counter. 

The main thing to consider when it comes to fresh meat delivery is the lead time it takes for your meat to arrive – hence the business will need to have factored this in when calculating the shelf life of their produce. If in doubt, it’s always worth speaking to the butcher and asking about their lead times. And remember, they’re probably receiving various batches of meat throughout the day so be sure to ask about the individual types of meat you’re purchasing.

CHECKING ONLINE REVIEWS

A great way to determine the reputability of a butcher is to read their reviews online. Any butcher that’s worth their salt will know how important customer feedback and reviews are to their overall reputation so try and find one that is listed on an established review website such as Trustpilot, Feefo or Google.

SaveCo Online reviews

             

Let’s face it, almost every business will be subject to negative customer experiences at some point so be sure to pay careful attention to any 1 or 2 star reviews. In fact, I’d be pretty wary of a company with hundreds of reviews that do not include any 1-stars. Be sure to read the customer experience but the most important thing to look for here is the company’s reply if any (you’d be surprised just how many companies fail to reply to their reviews online!). We all make judgements about companies when reading reviews and it’s very easy to be put off after reading a couple of bad customer experiences but it’s important to pay more attention to how the company has replied and what exactly the company has done to try and resolve the matter.

READ TERMS & CONDITIONS

I’ll be the first to admit that reading through lengthy terms and conditions is not amongst my “enjoy list” and it’s hardly surprising that The Guardian found during a survey that only 7% of people read the full terms and conditions when buying online. But reading a company’s T&Cs before making a purchase, particularly online, is strongly advisable since this is a legally binding agreement. You will also probably find answers to most questions that may arise, such as the company’s returns policy, refunds and what to do if things go wrong. 

THE ORDERING PROCESS

Thanks to the growth in e-commerce over the last decade or so it’s fair to say most of us are now familiar with placing online orders. Ordering halal meat online is no different and it goes something like this: 

Ordering Halal Meat Online - SaveCo Online

Except there are a few key things to remember:

  • Fresh meat is a perishable item and therefore must be packaged in a temperature controlled system in order to remain chilled when you take delivery. (See TAKING DELIVERY below).
  • Fresh meat has a very short shelf-life. Expect this to be around three days after taking delivery into account (assuming 24 to 48 hours lead time). As always, if in doubt ask your butcher.
  • Be aware of safe storage requirements if not consuming delivered meat within 3 days. (See STORING MEAT SAFELY below).

DIETARY NEEDS AND NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION

At this point, you will have already established that your chosen online retailer is selling certified halal meat. The next concern is to take into account any specific dietary or nutritional requirements you may have before making your purchase.

According to the NHS, as good a source of protein, vitamins and minerals meat is as part of a balanced diet, red meat in particular should be restricted to the daily recommended consumption of 70g. As some meats are high in saturated fat, which can raise blood cholesterol levels, it is always advisable to either check the label or ask your butcher for the leanest cuts and always compare fat content between various cuts. 

The information should appear form of a traffic light and here’s an example of what it looks like for chicken:

Nutritional information - SaveCo Online
NUTRITIONAL TRAFFIC LIGHT INFORMATION FOR HALAL WHOLE CHICKEN

This consists of 3 colours, red, amber and green based on the percentage of content per 100g.

 
 
 

100g (Raw)

100g (cooked)

Energy

597kJ/143kcal

628kJ/149kcal

Fat

6.8g

5.3g

Of Which Saturates

1.9g

1.2g

Carbohydrates

<0.5g

<0.5g

Of Which Sugars

<0.5g

<0.5g

Fibre

<0.5g

<0.5g

Protein

19.3g

24.8g

Salt

0.3g

0.4g

 

Looking for the perfect chicken curry recipe? See Parveen’s Perfect Healthy Butter Chicken Curry in our recipes section.

ONLINE CHAT SUPPORT

One of the joys of online shopping is being able to buy when it’s convenient for you, not just the retailer. And this often means you’re ready to buy in the evenings or late at night, well after the traditional high streets have turned the lights off. But in the past the trade-off between convenience and out-of-hours shopping was there was no one available to call if you needed help. 

But thanks to live chat support

TAKING DELIVERY

The first thing to check when your halal meat delivery arrives is that the contents match your original order, which you can check against your order confirmation email or the packing slip included in the box. Make sure to contact your retailer immediately if you notice any discrepancies with your order, such as damages or missing items. If you’re doing this by phone, be sure to take pictures and follow-up with an email. You should find the correct email address to use on the original order confirmation or packing slip.

Next, it is very important that you check that your meat has been packed within a sufficient temperature controlled packaging system, which should include ice packs and some form of insulation. 

Meat insulation packaging can take various forms, such as polystyrene, paper or wool. It’s a good idea to try and order from companies using environmentally sustainable solutions and doing a bit of due diligence here is key. 

As a rule of thumb, you should expect to see enough ice packs to cover half the weight of the meat. For instance, if you’ve ordered 5Kg of fresh meat you should have around 2.5Kg of ice packs.

STORING MEAT SAFELY

It’s important to store and prepare meat safely to stop bacteria from spreading and to avoid food poisoning. According to NHS UK, you should follow these guidelines:

  • store raw meat or raw poultry in clean sealed containers on the bottom shelf of the fridge, so the meat can’t touch or drip onto other food
  • follow any storage instructions on the label and don’t eat meat after its “use by” date
  • if you cook meat that you’re not going to eat straight away, cool it as quickly as possible and then put it in the fridge or freezer – remember to keep cooked meat separate from raw meat
  • always thoroughly clean plates, utensils, surfaces and hands straight away after they have touched raw or thawing meat to stop bacteria from spreading

You can read the full article: https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/how-to-store-food-and-leftovers/

COOKING MEAT SAFELY

Some people wash meat before they cook it, but this actually increases your risk of food poisoning, because the water droplets splash onto surfaces and can contaminate them with bacteria. For this reason, it’s best not to wash meat.

It’s important to prepare and cook meat properly. Cooking meat properly ensures that harmful bacteria on the meat are killed. If meat is not cooked all the way through, these bacteria may cause food poisoning.

Bacteria and viruses can be found all the way through certain meat. This means you need to cook these sorts of meat all the way through. When meat is cooked all the way through, its juices run clear and there is no pink or red meat left inside.

Meats that you should cook all the way through are:

  • poultry and game, such as chicken, turkey, duck and goose, including liver
  • pork
  • offal, including liver
  • burgers and sausages
  • kebabs
  • rolled joints of meat

You can eat whole cuts of beef or lamb when they are pink inside – or “rare” – as long as they are cooked on the outside. This is because any bacteria are generally on the outside of the meat.

These meats include:

  • steaks
  • cutlets
  • joints

 Further information and safe cooking tips can be found on NHS UK’s website here.