WESTER Ross Fisheries has teamed up with a member of the Shia community to cater for Muslim customers, the BBC reported.
Hatim Ameen flies up from Manchester to Loch Canaird near Ullapool to bless each fish to make it halal just before it is slaughtered.
At the site, salmon are pumped from sea pens on to a platform, where he touches each fish and says a silent prayer.
Hatim, who has been coming to the farm for seven years, then passes the salmon on to Wester Ross Fisheries staff to be stunned and killed.
As he explained to the BBC, the ritual of silently saying ‘In the name of the God’ is enough to make each salmon halal and fit for consumption by the branch of the Shia community of which he is a member.
Hatim reckons he touches and blesses 400 to 500 fish in a session, using a hot water bottle to keep his hands warm against the cold of a Scottish sea loch in November.
Wester Ross Fisheries boss Gilpin Bradley said the initial phone call from Hatim asking to come and bless salmon to make it halal was a bit of a surprise, but he is delighted the company went with it.
‘We couldn’t quite believe the phone call from Hatim, and we didn’t fully appreciate what was involved in a blessing and that he wanted to bless every salmon, but to be honest our customers like the fact that we are accommodating for another particular requirement.’
The fish are processed 50 miles away in Dingwall, and the halal batch will go to customers in Manchester, Leicester, London and Detroit.
Picture: Hatim Ameen in Wester Ross (photo:BBC)