Muslims can now feast on one of Italy's best-loved gastronomic delights, mozzarella, without any fear they are breaking Islamic Law.

For the first time a producer of the famous cheese from Campania, the La Baronia company based at Castel di Sasso near Caserta, has won certification that its mozzarella is halal - made in accordance with the dictums of Sharia. Italy's Zayd Ibn Thabit Islamic Culture Association and food-certification agency TUV gave the endorsement in an initiative promoted by the 'Consorzio di Tutela della Mozzarella di Bufala Campana DOP', the consortium that ensures the cheese is made according to time-honoured tradition.

"This initiative is a sign of the attention companies and public institutions are devoting to religious miniroties," said Abdallah Massimo Cozzolino, an imam at Naples Mosque and the president of the Zayd Ibn Thabit Islamic Culture Association.

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