UK: Subway removes ham and bacon from nearly 200 stores and offers halal meat only after ‘strong demand’ from Muslims

Nearly 200 Subway branches across the UK and Ireland have cut out ham and bacon, selling only halal meat, in response to demand from their multicultural customersDaily Mail – by Sean Poulter

Fast food giant Subway has removed ham and bacon from almost 200 outlets, and switched to halal meat alternatives in an attempt to please its Muslim customers.

It has confirmed turkey ham and turkey rashers will be used instead in 185 of its stores, where all the meat will now be prepared according to halal rules.

The chain, which has around 1,500 outlets across the UK, explained its decision by saying it had to balance animal welfare concerns with ‘the views of religious communities’.  

Traditional halal slaughter sees animals have their throats slit before bleeding to death. But Subway stressed that the meat served in its sandwiches would come from animals that have been stunned first, a practice that aims to reduce any suffering.

In Arabic the word halal means ‘permitted’ or ‘lawful’ and defines anything that is allowed or lawful according to the Qur’an.

It is often used to indicate food – particularly meat – has been prepared in accordance with Muslim principles and techniques.

Muslims are forbidden from eating any non-halal food and meat from pigs and Subway said customers can identify those stores selling halal food by the special ‘All meats are Halal’ sign, which must be displayed in participating branches.

In the halal-only branches ham and bacon has been substituted for turkey ham and rashers.

Many animal charities condemn halal slaughter as being cruel to animals.

Traditionally in halal abattoirs the throats of the animals are cut while they are fully conscious – an act many campaigners say is inhumane and needlessly cruel.

In non-halal abattoirs, livestock are stunned before killing to prevent any unnecessary suffering.

Some halal butchers also practise pre-stunning, though it is not permitted by some Islamic scholars.

In Britain, killing an animal without prior stunning is illegal, but the law gives special exemption to Muslim and Jewish meat producers on the grounds of religion.

There are thought to be around 12 abattoirs dedicated to unstunned slaughter in the UK, while hundreds practise stunned halal slaughter.

A Subway spokeswoman told MailOnline all halal meat served in the participating branches is from animals who were stunned prior to slaughter.

She said: ‘The growing popularity of the Subway chain with the diverse multicultural population across the UK and Ireland means we have to balance the values of many religious communities with the overall aim of improving the health and welfare standards of animals.

‘We put a programme into place in 2007 to ensure that the population demographic is taken into account when new store openings are considered in order that we meet consumer demand in each location.

‘All our suppliers comply with EU animal welfare legislation as a minimum and we require suppliers of halal products to adopt the stunning of animals prior to their slaughter.

‘All halal meats are certified by the appropriate halal authorities.

‘All halal Subway stores have numerous signs stating that they serve halal food.

‘These are situated on the menu panels, nutritional information and in the front window of the store.’

Animal campaigning charity PETA urged people to opt for a vegetarian diet to ensure they have the best interests of animals at heart.

A spokesman said: ‘At the best of times, meat is a product of a bloody and violent industry with no respect for other living beings who value their lives in the same way that we do and experience the same pain and terror that Subways’ customers would if they were killed for a sandwich.

‘Most religions, including Islam, preach kindness to animals, but words are one thing and practice another.

‘As the Dalai Lama said, “My religion is kindness”. And a diet that expresses kindness, is open to all religions and truly respects animal rights is a vegan one.

‘Subway-goers, no matter what their religion, can eat with a clear conscience by opting for the veggie patty, the veggie delight or, heaven forbid, a salad.’

Speaking about the general issue of halal slaughter, an RSPCA spokeswoman added: ‘Scientific research has clearly shown that slaughter of an animal without stunning can cause unnecessary suffering, and the RSPCA is opposed to the slaughter of any animal without first making it insensible to pain and distress.

‘At present, the only legal exemptions to stunning during slaughter exist for kosher and halal methods of slaughter, however, it is important to differentiate between ‘religious’ and ‘non-stun’ slaughter as around 90 per cent of all halal in the UK receives a stun before slaughter.

‘Our concern has nothing to do with the expression of religious belief but with the practice of killing by throat cutting without pre-stunning.

‘We believe that meat produced from animals stunned or not stunned before slaughter should be clearly labelled to allow consumer choice, and continue to press for changes in the law that would improve the welfare of all farm animals at the time of slaughter.’

27 thoughts on “UK: Subway removes ham and bacon from nearly 200 stores and offers halal meat only after ‘strong demand’ from Muslims

  1. Let’s see now we have the Kosher for the Jews and now the Muslims want in. Curiouser and curiouser dontcha think? My opinion is keep the bacon and the ham and they can order other fillings like turkey and chicken if they want but why should the rest have to do without? I happen to love ham and bacon. Subway you are wusses.

    1. Hindus don’t eat beef or pork either. They also don’t prefer fresh water fish. What’s for dinner? Chicken and rice, chicken and rice, chicken and rice….

  2. Here’s an idea, JUST DON’T GO TO SUBWAY!!!

    SHEESH!! You don’t see me complaining that I can’t get a steak at Caesar’s Pizza. You know what I do. I GO TO ANOTHER PLACE THAT DOES!!!

    Grow up, people!

  3. I agree with Putin: If you (muslims) can’t assimilate and learn the
    Russian language then leave; Russia doesn’t need immigrants;
    immigrants need Russia. These people do not assimilate. They
    take over.

    1. Just like the Borg – join us or die.

      What was yours will be ours.

      They are a terrible, evil virus largely (still!) stuck in the 7th century.

      This is where the US is headed – the US Gov is funding them every step of the way.

      1. Exactly. Reminds me of the movie “Invasion of the Body Snatchers”.
        I call them “pods”.

  4. this is bs to stir trouble.
    it’s the jews pushing this stuff on fast-food company’s.

    and subway afaik is one of the bastards who sends a lot of money to israel – like starbucks.

  5. You know this is AMERICA and if you don’t like our customs or what we eat or how we eat it then just pack your crap and go back to that camel pack’in crap hole you came from. We’re not in the habit of changing our habits,good or bad, for the likes of you. Company’s that bow to the “pressure” should go with them. I’m sick of other people coming here and wanting us to change so they can feel like they are in their own country. If you like your country’s customs then STAY THERE!

    1. Although this particular incident happen in the UK, stuff like this has happened way too many times here in the U.S. and I’m with you 100% Redhorse. If people don’t like our customs or any one country’s customs, for that matter, then get the HELL OUT! No one’s forcing you to stay. BYE, BYE!!!


    What a bunch of f’n MAROONS!!!!!

    Subway sucks anyway. Quit them years ago. Togo’s is FAR superior.

      1. I don’t know how far east they go, digger. There’s plenty of them here, though.

        Don’t care for Quizno’s either.

    1. What’s “Togo’s”? Don’t remember it from my time in LA and never seen it up here, or TX. Is it a regional “chain”?

      1. Yes, It’s a chain, Angel, but I don’t know how far it extends. Good sandwiches, wraps & salads. And they make a decent clam chowder too. 🙂

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