Q: Salaam w’allahkuum:
We arrange for local community members to host incoming international visitors for an evening meal. Many of our visitors are from Muslim countries where halal food and markets are readily available. Many of our local hosts choose to serve fish and I would like to ask that for those who are strictly adherent to a halal diet, must this fish be purchased from a halal market or butcher? Or, can fish (not shellfish) purchased from any supermarket be served?
(Name withheld for privacy)
A: We thank you for your query and sensitivity to Muslims and their faith.
Fish can be purchased from any fishery.
As a method of precaution the fish must not be fried/cooked in lard and/or other similar products that cannot be consumed by Muslims.
Under ideal conditions, if the fish is purchased from a fish ‘market’ and was cooked without it touching other non-fish (particularly meat products) whilst it was cooked, under general circumstances this would be fine.
Muslims generally are called upon to refrain from eating anything that is mixed with that which is not slaughtered in the name of God. Fish by contrast need not be slaughtered thus it can be purchased for consumption from any place in its raw form. This would be ideal.
We wish you the best with your guests, we are confident it would all go well, Ameen.
Allah Certainly Knows Best.