The Department of Islamic Development Malaysia (JAKIM) has issued a statement on Facebook stating that bakeries holding Malaysia’s Halal Certification (SPHM) are permitted to write festive greetings on cakes for customers to take home.

JAKIM further clarified that the issue was addressed on Dec 25, 2020, and on Nov 1 this year, and that it has been maintaining a consistent stance on the matter.

In its post, the department also encouraged all SPHM holders to seek guidance from JAKIM or the State Islamic Religious Departments (JAIN/MAIN) if there are any uncertainties regarding Malaysia’s halal certification.

This clarification came after a recent social media uproar when an internal memo released on 14 Dec by a bakery went viral.

The internal memo instructed its employees not to decorate cakes with “Merry Christmas or X’Mas”, and to instead replace it with “Season’s Greetings” in order to comply and meet the halal certification requirements by JAKIM.

According to Free Malaysia Today, the memo was actually meant for internal use, but a staff member who was confronted by a customer had shown his letter to them in defence.