The government of the Republic of Indonesia through the Halal Product Assurance Organizing Agency (Badan Penyelenggara Jaminan Produk Halal – “BPJPH”) introduced the halal label issued by the BPJPH, effective as of 1 March 2022. Regulations on the halal status of products distributed to the public were issued following the enactment of Law Number 33 of 2014 on Halal Product Guarantees (“Law 33/2014”) as amended by Law Number 11 of 2020 on Job Creation (“Omnibus Law”). The government issued Government Regulation Number 39 of 2021 on Halal Product Guarantee Operations (“GR39/2021”), effective as of 2 February 2021.
I. Products that are required to bear a halal certificate
Under the regulations on halal product guarantees, products that are imported into, distributed and traded in Indonesia by business actors must be halal certified. These include goods or services related to food, beverages, cosmetics, chemical products, biological products, genetically engineered products and consumer goods that are used, utilized or applied by the public. The “consumer goods” referred to in the regulations are limited to goods derived from animals or which contain elements of animals, while “business actors” include individuals and business entities, whether they are legal entities or not, that do business in Indonesia.
Products with non-halal ingredients are excluded from this obligation, but the products must be marked as non-halal.
II. The management of halal certification
Since the issuance of the regulations, the BPJPH now manages halal product guarantees. The BPJPH is an agency established by the government as required under Law 33/2014, and has the authority to issue or revoke halal certificates and halal labels for products, which authority the Indonesian Council of Ulemas (Majelis Ulama Indonesia – “MUI”) used to have. Although, under these regulations, the MUI no longer has the authority to issue halal certificates, those that have been issued by the MUI are still valid until their expiry.
III. The procedures for obtaining halal certificates
In brief, the procedure for obtaining a halal certificate from the BPJPH is the following:
1. the business actor submits an application for the halal certificate to the BPJPH through the electronic system;
2. the BPJPH checks the completeness of the documents submitted by the business actor within one day of their receipt by the BPJPH;
3. if the documents are complete, the applicant must choose the halal verification institution (lembaga pemeriksa halal – “LPH”) within one day after the documents are stated to be complete;
4. the LPH reviews or verifies the halal status of the product according to the standards set by the BPJPH, which must be completed within 15 days after the LPH is appointed;
5. the LPH submits the results of the review or verification to the MUI, with a copy to the BPJPH;
6. the MUI should then determine the halal status of the product through a halal fatwa meeting (sidang fatwa halal) within three days of receipt by the MUI of the results of the review from the LPH;
7. the BPJPH should issue the halal certificate one day after its receipt of the determination of the halal status by the MUI. A halal certificate is valid for four years.
For micro or small-scale businesses, the halal certification of products is based on a statement issued by the business actor, which must apply the standards set by the BPJPH.
The procedure for obtaining a halal certificate for micro- or small-scale businesses is the following:
1. the business actor submits the statement to the BPJPH to be forwarded to the MUI;
2. the MUI convenes a halal fatwa meeting to determine the halal status of the product;
3. the BPJPH issues the halal certificate based on the written fatwa from the MUI.
The following administrative sanctions may be imposed on business actors that violate the halal product guarantee requirements in Indonesia:
a. a written reprimand;
b. an administrative fine of up to two billion Rupiah;
c. the revocation of the halal certificate; or
d. the recall of the product from circulation.
The administrative sanctions can be imposed progressively, alternatively or cumulatively.
This article is intended as a brief and general description of the procedure Halal certification in Indonesia under the prevailing regulations and may not be used as a legal advice or to replace a legal advice on a specific case. The regulations referred to in this article may no longer be current. We will be pleased to assist by providing legal advice on matters related to this article, including by providing legal services and assistance for other legal issues. For more information, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.