PETALING JAYA: There is nothing stopping shops with halal certification from decorating cakes with "Merry Christmas" greetings, says the Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (Jakim).
However, these cakes cannot be put on display at shops with the halal certification.
In a statement issued on Christmas Day, Jakim deputy director-general (Operations) Datuk Abdul Aziz Jusoh said greetings for festivals were allowed on all products if they were not put on display in shops which have the halal certification from Jakim.
"Greetings for festivals are allowed on products which have been certified halal with the logo.
"There is no provision (in the halal certification) which touches on the celebration of any festivals, including Islamic festivals in the Malaysian Halal Certification Procedure Manual (Domestic) 2020.
"The Manual and the Malaysian Halal Management System only apply to the applicants and holders of the Malaysian Halal Certificate," said Abdul Aziz.
He was commenting on a recent report in another portal which stated that a customer was shocked when he received a cake with “Happy Holidays” when he had requested that it be decorated with the wish “Merry Christmas.”
The report said the store had refused to do so since it was in the process of getting a halal certificate, quoting Jakim as claiming that the halal logo issued by the Halal Management System cannot be used to promote other religions.
On Thursday (Dec 24), Minister in the Prime Minister's Department (Religious Affairs) Datuk Dr Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri tweeted that as long as the cake was not for display, it was all right.
“To put it simply, if Shop B with a Jakim halal certificate bakes a cake with a religious celebration wish for display, then it is not allowed, but if Shop B had prepared the cake that was ordered by A that has a religious celebration wish, it is permitted, ” he tweeted.