Religion, regulation, consumption

Globalising kosher and halal markets

By John Lever and Johan Fischer

Religion, regulation, consumption


  • Hardcover
  • Paperback

Book Information

  • Format: eBook
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-0366-6
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Published Date: January 2018
  • BIC Category: Dietetics & Nutrition, Food & Society, Religion, Sociology, Religion: general, Dietetics & nutrition, Cultural studies: food & society, POLITICAL SCIENCE / Globalization, SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General, Religion: General


This book explores the emergence and expansion of global kosher and halal markets with a particular focus on the UK and Denmark. Kosher is a Hebrew term meaning 'fit' or 'proper' while halal is an Arabic word that literally means 'permissible' or 'lawful'. This is the first book to explore kosher and halal comparatively at different levels of the social scale such as individual consumption, the marketplace, religious organisations and the state. Kosher and halal markets have become global in scope and states, manufacturers, restaurants, shops, certifiers and consumers around the world are faced with ever stricter and more complex kosher and halal requirements. The research question in this book is: What are the consequences of globalising kosher and halal markets?


'Religion, regulation, consumption is an important contribution to the literature on the development of the halal and kosher markets, particularly food markets. The book is empirically rich and offers an intriguing journey among state bureaucracies, manufacturers, restaurants, shops, certifiers and consumers in the UK and Denmark, where kosher and halal markets are fast developing, reaching a growing niche of religious as well as non-religious consumers. It will be an essential reading to scholars as well as a resource for students interested in the development of religious markets.'
Mara Miele, Professor of Human Geography, Cardiff University

'This book asks how globalising kosher and halal markets are similar and different, and how regulation, standardisation, certification, and social and national contexts help explain the political economy of religious compliance in the twenty-first century. Fascinating in scope and with attention to classic theoretical debates as well as the contemporary practices of audit culture, this well-researched, careful book sheds light on a little understood dimension of the globalized market in food.'
Bill Maurer, Professor of Anthropology and Law, University of California, Irvine

'Lever and Fischer offer a highly original comparative analysis of the certification and consumption practices that comprise the markets for kosher and halal foods in the United Kingdom and Denmark. Using ethnographic interviews, historical research, and social theory, their probing account sheds light on how ancient customs and traditional foodways are adapting to globalisation in this era of transnational markets and regulation.'
Timothy D. Lytton, Distinguished University Professor and Professor of Law, Georgia State University, and author of Kosher: Private Regulation in the Age of Industrial Food

'Anyone curious about how kosher and halal work in today's globalised, secularised market economies will want to read this comparative study of food practices in the UK and Denmark.'
Marion Nestle, Professor Emerita, New York University, and author of Food Politics

'Readers of Religion, Regulation, Consumption will benefit from the layered social and comparative analysis to self-reflect on food selections and limitations.'
Agriculture and Human Values


Introduction: global Kosher and halal markets
1. Kosher and halal in the UK and Denmark
2. Manufacturing and selling meat
3. Beyond Meat
4. Kosher consumers
5. Halal consumers


John Lever is Reader in Sustainable and Resilient Communities in the Department of Management at the University of Huddersfield

Johan Fischer is Associate Professor in the Department of Social Sciences and Business at Roskilde University

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