2 Mich. McDonald’s Drop Halal Food After Suit

DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – The only two McDonald’s restaurants in the United States that serve food prepared according to Islamic law have stopped doing so.

This comes after the fast food giant and a Michigan franchise owner agreed to a $700,000 legal settlement in April after a customer sued.

The fast-food giant said in a statement Monday that the locations in the Detroit suburb of Dearborn, which has a large Muslim population, no longer offer a halal McChicken sandwich or Chicken McNuggets “to focus on our national core menu.”

Ahmed Ahmed, the Dearborn Heights man who represented plaintiffs in the class-action suit, claimed he bought a chicken sandwich in September 2011 at the restaurant but found it wasn’t prepared according to Islamic law.

Islam forbids consumption of pork, and God’s name must be invoked before an animal providing meat for consumption is slaughtered.

“It’s disappointing,” said a metro Detroit Muslim who didn’t want to give her name. She said she doesn’t often eat fast food these days, but she liked having the option. “You go from being able to eat all the chicken at McDonald’s  … and now you can’t anymore. I’m back to the fish filet.”

The settlement is being shared by the customer, a Muslim-run Detroit health clinic, Dearborn’s Arab American National Museum and lawyers — and there’s been some debate as to whether those recipients make sense.

The corporation says it takes into account “local and dietary preferences.” Neither the statement nor a spokeswoman said whether the decision to cease halal preparation was related to the lawsuit.

Overall, the Detroit area is home to about 150,000 Muslims of many ethnicities.

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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