M&S first to launch own-brand Halal ready meal range

M&S Food is will be the first UK food retailer to launch a range of own-brand Halal prepared meals. In response to the growing demand for a Halal diet from November 6 customers will be able shop a range of six Halal Food Authority (HFA) certified prepared meal across 36 selected M&S stores.
M&S' Halal range aims to broaden appeal among consumers.
// Marks & Spencer is the first major UK retailer to have an own-brand halal meat range
// The range is HFA certified and includes versions of popular prepared meals
// The ready meals will be available in 36 selected M&S stores across the UK

M&S Food is will be the first major food retailer in the UK to launch a range of own-brand halal prepared meals.

In response to the growing demand for a halal diet, customers will be able shop a range of six Halal Food Authority (HFA) certified prepared meals available from 36 M&S stores from November 6.

M&S Food technologists and its product development team have worked with HFA and suppliers to deliver halal certified versions of its most popular prepared meals.

The meals on offer include chicken arrabbiata, chicken & mushroom tagliatelle, chicken & leek bake, chicken hotpot, chicken jalfrezi and a chicken tikka masala.

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Protecting the magic of M&S Food means leading the way as food innovators, with first to market ranges that respond to growing dietary demands and can deliver real commercial impact,” M&S Food managing director Stuart Machin said.

“M&S Food is changing to become more relevant, more often to families across Britain and our new halal meal range is a great example of how we are broadening appeal so that more customers can enjoy our delicious, quality food.”

The new halal-prepared meal range will help M&S deliver a better localised offer in 36 M&S Food stores and will also be sold by M&S’s international franchise partner Al-Futtaim in overseas markets like Singapore and Dubai.

Colleagues across M&S that follow a halal diet have been instrumental in driving the development of the range.

The new M&S Halal prepared meals will be stocked alongside Shazans products.

“Following a halal diet, there are limited options if I want to grab something quick and easy for dinner,” M&S Temple Fortune store manager Simon Pollitt-Khan said.

“Whilst some major retailers are starting to stock Halal meat, there are still very few opportunities to eat different flavour foods – like Italian or more traditional British dishes – in a convenient halal format,”

“Knowing M&S’s heritage for innovation and the growing demand for halal food, I approached the food leadership team with an idea and it’s great to see it turned into a commercial reality.”

In May this year, M&S began stocking a range of Shazans-branded halal chicken products in selected stores and saw a strong sales response from local customers, which fuelled an investment in own-label development.

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  1. So everything M&S has previously marketed itself on, from animal welfare to being able to trace its meat back to the farm, is being forgotten because they think they can make a quick buck and save a floundering company with this scheme?

    I recall the horse meat scandal when M&S said it was the only company that could be sure all its meat was safe and not horse because it could trace all meat back to the farm it originated from. By bringing in a company such as Shazans, can it do that? Can it be sure the chicken is free range?

    Shazans has what it calls a Select range, which is non-stunned meat. Even if the meat provided to M&S is stunned, M&S is putting money in the pocket of a company which practices the sort of animal cruelty it is supposed to be against. A means of slaughter condemned by organisations including the RSPCA and Compassion in World Farming that it claims to work with on upholding animal welfare standards. I foresee a time when Halal meat becomes the norm across the M&S range as it finds meat supplied from foreign wholesalers is cheap and good enough for its customers.

  2. Well done to M&S!

    To everyone else who has a problem, please stop having an Indian Takeaway from now on as all meat served in an Indian restaurant is halal.

  3. As pervious comments. M and S trying to get money any way they can. Theses poor animals that suffer a slow death. Sorry I don’t agree. Death for theses animals should be as quick as possible. I was silly enough to watch a few films on how they are halal slaughtered. Horrendous watching theses animals slowly due.

    • I have a video of halal slaughter in a mosque, and they kick it and pick it up and slam it to the ground before roughly and violently saw away at it’s throat. You see it struggle and writhe in pain, and even when the throat is cut, you see the cow still moving and choking. Vile. I agree with all you say.

  4. Well done M&S. The way animals are slaughtered for halal and kosher meat drains most of the blood out from the animal thus making it healthier for humans. Killing of animal in any form is cruel and if someone feels strongly about it they should become vegetarian. Looking forward to the lovely halal food by M&S.

    • You’re missing the point completely. Yes, killing animals IS cruel – but there are different levels of cruelty in the killing process. What’s being discussed here is that ritual slaughter is one of THE MOST CRUEL ways of slaughter. There are thousands of documented research papers published over many years that support this. Please understand that some meat eaters want animals slaughtered in more humane ways – ways that Muslims refuse to adhere to.

      Also M&S, after many years of claiming to be in support of animal welfare, are now doing a u-turn by supporting sacrificial slaughter to make profit from a growing muslim customer base within the UK.

      • Jon, there is NO way to humanely KILL an animal. They all fight , scream, are terrified when they are gassed, strung up, boiled alive, stunned (which often doesn’t work!), NO ONE NEEDS to eat meat. The whole world would be a much healthier happier place if we stopped. One day it WILL happen.

    • Absolute nonsense! ‘Healthier’!! Scientifically proven it causes far more suffering than ‘normal’ slaughter – that’s why the biggest animal welfare charities and BVA are campaigning to end the exemption allowed by the Government! (And, yes, I am vegan!)

    • “if someone feels strongly about it they should become vegetarian”

      I am vegetarian and have been for 30 years, but I accept that other people eat meat. If they do eat meat then animals should have the highest welfare possible which includes the shortest journey to a slaughterhouse and the least stressful experience when killed. Halal does not achieve these aims.

      I think that many people are eating less meat now for the sake of the environment and would be prepared to pay more to know that animals have been treated well.

      There are many shops who serve halal already and I don’t think M&S should be chasing this market as many people don’t want to give their custom to anywhere that supports this practice.

    • Typical muslim reply. It is vile and cruel and if you think this is ok, you should be subject to the same slaughter process. And NO, we should not have to be vegetarian, you cheeky moo.

  5. I agree!! I won’t be buying M& S food ever again, I’m a vegetarian so the fact that they approve of this way of slaughter upsets me.
    What a shame they’ve given in just to make sales.

  6. Animal cruelty has nothing to do with Halal or Kosher.. draining blood is the healthiest option.
    Cruelty Can happen anywhere in the chain.. e.g. at the point animals are reared in cramped conditions without the light of day in chicken farms

    • Quite frankly Samuel Ali, I am sure you don’t want my reply and I am sure it won’t be posted, so I will say, you are a vile, subhuman if you think halal and kosher are humane. Neither are and should be banned, as should all muslims in my opinion.

  7. I just can’t believe this, M & S you are going backwards not forwards! How can you justify animals being killed in such a barbaric way for profit.
    I’m sure this will do your business more harm than good – feeling very, very disappointed with your decision and you’ve lost another customer.

  8. So wrong M & S. If we have to eat animals then ensure they are firstly treated right than killed in the kindest way. I am not a racist but I wouldn’t expect to eat meat in Muslim countries which has been stunned first because that is what they believe. This however is the UK. We dont believe in halal meat. We shouldn’t be going down this route.

  9. I agree, I’ve cancelled my Sparks account. Animal welfare should take precedence over religious traditions and does for many other retailers. Very disappointing M&S.

  10. So much for animal welfare standards. Just flown out the window. All slaughter is cruel but this is absolutely barbaric . Shame on you M & S.

  11. to be honest if people knew how animal were handled in conventional slaughter houses I dont think they would feel any better.
    from transporting to slaughter to the actual handling and killing.
    there is still emotional and physical suffering.

    • Rubbish. Most conventional slaughter houses the slaughter with a stun bolt is humane is done properly. There have been a couple of cases that I know about where the animals were mistreated, but they had muslims working there with non-muslims, so says it all really. Don’t try to make out halal slaughter is humane or better, or sympathise with muslims. That just makes you a sick, sad person.

      • You really are a racist idiot who obviously knows nothing about farming or what goes on in a slaughterhouse or for that matter how the animals get there.
        My father and grandfather’s friend owned a slaughterhouse. I know exactly what happens!

  12. Fantastic, M&S not only showing commercial nous but not listening to any of the trifling rubbish that comes from the xenophobes!

    • How about I slit your throat with a non-sharp knife, having previously mistreated you first, then hang you upside down to let your blood drain, e.g. you choke to death on your own blood in abject fear and pain. Then tell me it’s ok, you sick, saddo. You wouldn’t crow about it then and I bet you haven’t even watch a halal slaughter video.

    • Why do the luvvies always have to make this about racism ffs.
      It’s about the welfare of animals. I think killing of animals in any shape or form is wrong but halal and kosher is the cruelest.

  13. Bye bye M&,S lost another customer all what you have stood for in the past has gone, why just because you see a bigger market with other religions, this is the UK this is not how people eat their meat.

  14. For all the ignorant people out there the majority of Halal meat in the UK is pre-stunned. M&S’s new range is pre-stunned – as is the chicken in KFC and Nando’s halal stores. Please don’t mask your bigotry with a claim of caring for animals.

    • Well said. Most don’t even know anything about the segmentation of the Halal market and the different types of Halal yet go on exposing their ignorance or bigotry or worse both! Please educate yourself on what M&S is actually doing with pre-stun Halal before you make ignorant blanket comments.

      • Totally agree with you Reehan. There are many uneducated people here, who are missing the point! Unless your Vegan, your a hypocrite slandering about ‘cruelty and suffering to animals’, whereas the main point is the animal is being sacrificed! Whether it be fast or slow, you are happy to consume it and therefore have no right to spread negative remarks about halal slaughtering!

    • Yes, electro-immobilisation stunning, which is worse. They wake up just in time to feel the cut, pain and terror. So no it’s not a full stun, which is what you are saying happens. Halal is halal, there are no different forms of halal, you thick plank. Almost all slaughter houses are halal. Only a few small scale farmers who slaughter their own animals humanely are available. Shocking and shameful as is your comment.

    • Not racism or religion it’s about cruelty.
      According to another commenting one of their suppliers do non stunned as well so m and s are helping to fund that. Get off your high horse.

  15. Halal is definitely the way to go to ensure animals are raised in the best environment and slaughtered in the most humane way. Bravo M&S, you have gained a customer.

    • 31 European countries e.g. vets and scientists did studies that have proven halal without full stunning is cruel and inhumane. You might want to check your facts, thicko. Dear me, the amount of ignorance on halal slaughter is stunning. Apart from which, muslims don’t need halal meat, they can eat our meat killed our way, the quran says so.

  16. I will never buy halal meat as the lack of pre-stunning makes it inherently inhumane. Having also had experience and sight of behind the scenes practices in these facilities I know the only reason halal businesses promote this is to cut costs. Every slaughterhouse should be legally required to have 24 hr publicly viewable cctv and 100% pre-stunning.

    I’m a Christian, married to a Sikh and have an atheist brother with strong animal welfare concerns. We are all entitled to assurances that why we buy is NOT prepared with meat that involves the ritual abuse of animals.

    Unless M&S offer VERY bold labelling and ensure 100% non-halal food is always available I’ll be shopping at Waitrose and independent suppliers from now on.

  17. Hahah anyone who shops for food in m and s and says they are going to now stop are lying. And if you did, after one day at any other supermarket you’ll be back.

  18. If you dont like it then walk away. . . Carry on eating the nasty pork and become a PIG! As soon as anything in the market comes out for muslims all the racist rats come out..

    • islam is not a race, nor are muslims a race. They come from all countries and different races. It has nothing to do with being racist. It’s about inhumane treatment to animals. Apart from which, muslims don’t need halal anything. They can eat our food slaughtered our way, the quran says so. So, moron, you might want to do some research before making ignorant commenta and calling people racist for objecting to meat dedicated to a false idol. Christians and Sikhs and other religions are forbidden to eat halal meat.

  19. Seriously, some of the comments are absolutely nonsense!! Most of the meat in Tescos or most supermarkets and KFC is importers from Thailand or other surrounding countries, guess what all meat in these countries is Halal, just because they don’t label it Halal that doesn’t mean it isn’t! Also do some research and understand the meaning of Halal, just because the way the animal is slaughtered doesn’t make it halal, halal is also the welfare of the animal etc….

  20. You won’t be buying food from M&S it won’t be a great loss , no problem I will buy from them and so will thousands of others ..

  21. For those who were shopping at M&S previously before thinking about the animal welfare what are your thoughts About child welfare, their clothes are made in Israel and in Bangladesh and other third world countries through child labour. If you have strong views about eating animal food for you, but putting down another religion and it’s values isn’t humane either.

  22. Loving how those against barbaric ritual slaughter are labelled ‘racist pigs’, *eye roll. It’s got absolutely nothing to do with race and I am tired of uneducated people attempting to defend this outdated and unwanted method of slaughter. There ARE ways of slaughtering an animal so that it is completely unaware of what’s happening. Halal slaughter only involves a partial stun which is recoverable from much quicker and therefore they are much more likely to be conscious whilst having their throats hacked away at. If I did this to a dog in the street would it be acceptable? No of course not. So you pro-halal people need to get off your ‘high horse’ and realise that those protesting are only interested in the welfare of the animals and stop using ‘racism’, (even though it’s a RELIGIOUS practice, nothing to do with race), as pathetic justification for your slanderous comments.

  23. Total shock that m&s have bought into this horrific slaughter method, and yes of most of us all know that killing any animal causes stress and pain … all sentient animals can smell the fear and blood of slaughter as they await their turn. As individuals we make choices weather we are happy to then eat other animals, what we have little control over is the methods and welfare involved in bringing the meat to our plate, on this we rely on the processes put in place by government. This practise should be outlawed I have seen videos of best practice ! And at the opposite end of the scale, where I felt that humans don’t deserve a place on this planet for the horror and suffering they cause in the name of religion. M&S you should hang your head in shame for making the decision to buy into this method of killing, and yes I too no longer will ever set foot in your stores again, and will encourage my family and friends to understand your double standards when it comes to animal welfare. Hopefully people will vote with their feet.

  24. M&S says all the British chicken used in its halal ready meals, which are sold in distinctive orange packs, is certified by the Halal Food Authority (HFA), which does allow pre-stunning.

    The birds are given a form of electro-stunning, which makes them unconscious and is approved by the Humane Slaughter Association.

  25. Halal registration is a con! Muslims can pray over ANY food to make it Halal , this is another scam forcing non-stunned slaughtering methods on all non-muslims, I will no longer shop at or support M&S now

  26. As an atheist I find it offensive that religious mumbo jumbo is getting involved with the supply of food and also as an animal lover find that this country having achieved good animal welfare standards are now being dragged back to medieval times ,torturing them before slaughter . so as a consequence will not be using any M&S stores anymore . shame on who ever made this very poor decision .

  27. This is an absolute disgrace and has no place in modern Britain. How they can put profit before morals and ethics is beyond me. Marks and Spencer’s has always been about British tradition and values – clearly their stance on this has now changed. I will not step foot in their door again. Extremely disappointing Marks & Spencer.


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