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The Deputy Director of The Assessment Institute for Foods, Drugs and Cosmetics Indonesian Council of Ulama (LPPOM MUI), Ir. Sumunar Jati, in a web seminar themed Indonesia World Halal Center: Domestic Potential and Global Challenges held by Maarif Hasyim Latif University (UMAHA) some time ago, conveyed that, a more macro approach must be used to make Indonesia as a halal hub.

He further emphasized that all sectors must collaborate with each other and have joint actions so as to create outcomes. In this case, the outcome occupies all levels. The level of policy by the government is then reduced to regulations that support the growth of the halal industry. At the organizational level there are halal examiners, business actors, universities, and training institutions.

“To make Indonesia as world’s halal center, we can use the octagon strategy. This can be based on the experience of LPPOM MUI when conducting examinations in various companies, attending seminars, and seeing countries that have succeeded in raising halal as their competitiveness,” explained Sumunar.

In Octagon’s strategy, there are at least eight aspects that must be mastered by Indonesia. First, Human Capital, in this case, human resources must be developed, both in terms of knowledge and human relations. At the expert level, we must have human resources who are well versed and know about halal things such as scholars, practitioners, auditors, and consultants.

Then, there must be people who drive the halal industrial market, this is where we need business people. Academics are needed to meet the needs of the halal market, for example in finding alternative halal materials. Not to forget, the public must be increasingly educated so that awareness of halal continues to increase.

“LPPOM MUI for the past 31 years has had halal knowledge that we manage. In addition, we also have qualified human resources in the halal sector, namely halal auditors,” he explained.

In addition to human capital, Indonesia must also have a special halal-related event. It aims to branding Indonesia as a country that is ready to become the center of halal world and increase the volume of the halal market. So far there have been several events held regularly every year, some of which are the Indonesia Sharia Economic Festival (ISEF) and the Indonesia Halal Expo (INDHEX).

State capacity also needs to be in the spotlight. Indonesia must be able to map its capabilities and advantages. For example, in the halal tourism sector regional products that are already labeled halal can be featured. It must be stressed, halal becomes a quality product, this can be the competitiveness of each region.

“Furthermore, the state must have infrastructure in the form of hardware or software as well as hard systems and soft systems. When it comes to hardware, we must have halal hub ports and logistics. Indonesia already has one in the Tanjung Priok area,” Sumunar explained.

Then, he continued, the halal lab is also still minimal. It needs to be further developed, by inviting every university to have an accredited and standardized halal lab. Regarding soft systems, LPPOM MUI already has 11 Halal Assurance System (HAS) criteria that can be continuously developed, and even has the potential to become world standards.

Indonesia must also be adaptive to technology, from providing alternative raw materials, looking for the right and halal processing, to products to consumers. Not only in terms of scientific, Indonesia must also understand halal in terms of social and marketing.

In this case, Indonesia can utilize mainstream media and social media. This must be developed with a variety of halal-related content. “We invite people to adopt the halal lifestyle and make it our new normal,” Sumunar said.

For marketing strategies, Indonesia must open its eyes to the widest potential of the digital 4.0 Era. This could become new land and markets in the current era. All of this is supported by the foundation of public government support.

“These are the pillars that can become the framework in Indonesia to become the center of halal in the world. All of them need support from all of us as the children of the nation and halal people, who are responsible for developing halal in Indonesia,” Sumunar concluded. (YN)

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