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McDonald’s settles ‘halal it our way’ suit

New York PostArticle Curtesy of
By:  Associated Press
Publish Date:  01/22/2013
McDonald’s settles ‘halal it our way’ suit

McDonald’s Corp. and a franchise owner have reached a tentative settlement in a lawsuit alleging that food at a Detroit-area restaurant with a large Muslim customer base wasn’t prepared according to Islamic dietary laws as advertised.

McDonald’s and Finley’s Management Co. agreed to pay $700,000. The money will be shared by Dearborn Heights resident Ahmed Ahmed, a Detroit health clinic, the Arab American National Museum in Dearborn and lawyers.

Ahmed’s lawyer, Kassem Daklallah, said yesterday he’s “thrilled” with the preliminary deal. McDonald’s and Finley’s Management deny any liability but say the settlement is in their best interests. He said he believes it’s the first lawsuit of its kind related to McDonald’s and halal food.

The lawsuit alleged that Ahmed bought a chicken sandwich in September 2011 at a Dearborn McDonald’s but found it wasn’t halal — meaning it didn’t meet Islamic requirements for preparing food.

Daklallah said there are only two McDonald’s in the US that sell halal products and both are in Dearborn, which has one of the nation’s largest Arab and Muslim communities.

The locations advertise that they exclusively sell halal Chicken McNuggets and McChicken sandwiches, Dakallah said. He said there was no evidence of problems on the production side, but he alleges that the Dearborn location sold non-halal products when it ran out of halal.