SAA rubbishes reports of contaminated halaal food

04 December 2017 - 10:48 By Nomahlubi Jordaan
An SAA Aircraft on the runway at the O.R.Tambo International Airport. File photo
An SAA Aircraft on the runway at the O.R.Tambo International Airport. File photo
Image: Gallo Images / The Times / Alon Skuy

South African Airways (SAA) has lashed out at “sensational reports” alleging that the food on their flights is contaminated.

“The claims made are baseless and malicious and appear to be the works of a handful of disgruntled employees who wish to bring the name of AirChefs and by extension‚ SAA into disrepute‚” said airline spokesperson Tlali Tlali in a statement.

Tlali was responding to a story published on IOL which claims that employees at Air Chefs‚ at the Cape Town International Airport‚ allege that the halaal food is contaminated with pork.

According to IOL‚ three staff members they spoke to anonymously claim they have notified management that non-halaal meats and utensils were used in the halaal kitchen.

Tlali said SAA would like to assure all its Muslim customers that the airline maintains the highest halaal requirements and standards in food preparation. “SAA’s Muslim customers can be assured that AirChefs‚ the catering subsidiary of the airline‚ is compliant with the stringent halaal requirements as stated and governed by the governing body‚ the Muslim Judicial Council (MJC)‚” said Tlali.

“This article has the potential to create doubt in the minds of our Muslim customers‚ and employees‚ which is a regrettable consequence of highly irresponsible journalism that falls short of the standards expected of the media. Furthermore‚ the article caused considerable damage to the AirChefs brand with the potential of even hurting the company’s future commercial interests. We are therefore considering our legal options in this regard.”

Tlali said the MJC had received anonymous calls insisting that there were irregularities at AirChefs.

He said the MJC conducted an audit of the kitchen and found that no food-related halaal processes were violated.

“The facility was found compliant to halaal requirements and was given the highest possible rating of ‘extremely efficient.’”


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