Polemic emerges over French Halal fast-food restaurants

Polemic emerges over French Halal fast-food restaurants

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A polemic is emerging over a plan to open a number of exclusively Halal fast-food restaurants across France and certain politicians have expressed concerns about the project,

Which they are labelling “sectarian” and “discriminatory”. France’s “Quick” fast-food chain is apparently intending to open 14 more Halal outlets across the country to cater to Muslim populations. This would add to the eight restaurants already opened up last year in several cities, a move which was also polemical and led to a compromise whereby both Halal and non-Halal food is now served to customers.

French daily “Le Figaro” reported that the 14, new “Quick” fast-food restaurants would be opened in the Paris suburbs, Reims, Strasbourg, Lille, Bordeaux and Marseille. There are already outlets in Roubaix, Marseille and several other areas.

The restaurant outlet has declined to comment the report but “Le Figaro” cites a Muslim consumer source as attesting the project is on the table.

After the polemic at the opening of an exclusively Halal “Quick” in Roubaix last year, certain local politicians in some areas say they will push for a similar resolution of the dispute by indicating to “Quick” their opposition to serving exclusively Halal food and the need to leave a choice to consumers.

The French newspaper noted that Claude Capillon, Mayor of the Rosny-sous-Bois suburb of Paris sees the project as “discriminatory” and will insist on choice in the outlets.

Capillon says he has confirmation of the plan to open a Halal restaurant in his constituency.

Similarly, Communist Mayor of La Courneuve in the predominantly Muslim area outside of Paris blasted the project and said it was “sectarian.” Overall, the Halal market that caters to Frances six million Muslims is estimated by “Le Figaro” at 5.5 billion euros (USD 7 billion). Muslims make up about 10 percent of the overall French population here.

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