Belgian fruit syrup faces boycott calls over halal labelling

A fruit syrup that has been a staple of Belgian kitchens for generations is at the centre of a row over national identity, after its manufacturers applied for ‘halal’ certification.

The makers of Sirop de Liège, a molasses made of stewed apples, dates and pears and known by its distinctive blue and green pot, face a bitter backlash after they sought to tap into overseas Islamic markets.

The Siroperie Meurens, the family business that has been boiling fruit to the same recipe since 1902, faces calls for a boycott and has been inundated with online abuse since it announced the move.