Singapore to import lambs from Canada for this year's korban ritual

Lambs being gathered at the Sultan Mosque for the korban ritual during the 2010 Hari Raya Haji festival. For the first time, 500 lambs from Canada will be imported to Singapore for this year's korban ritual, the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore
Lambs being gathered at the Sultan Mosque for the korban ritual during the 2010 Hari Raya Haji festival. For the first time, 500 lambs from Canada will be imported to Singapore for this year's korban ritual, the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (Muis) announced on Wednesday. -- BH FILE PHOTO: TUKIMAN WARJI  

For the first time, 500 lambs from Canada will be imported to Singapore for this year's korban ritual, the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (Muis) announced on Wednesday.

The lambs however do not come cheap - at $757 each - due to transportation and air freight costs. In comparison, the main bulk of the 2,000 sheep that are imported here from Australia cost $455 each.

Muis said Canada had been chosen as an alternative source for korban livestock following a review committee set up in December last year. Last year, the ritual almost did not take place due to new livestock rules in Australia. Authorities there require exporters of livestock meant for slaughter to comply with internationally accepted animal welfare standards.

The council added that the import of sheep from regional countries had been considered but did not meet necessary conditions by Agri-Food And Veterinary Authority's (AVA). The korban ritual, which involves the slaughter of an animal on Hari Raya Haji, commemorates Prophet Ibrahim's obedience to God, with meat from the slaughter given to needy families. The ritual will be held at 21 mosques islandwide on Oct 15.