Don Carson hopes there will be a celebration of the Muslim community's contribution to New Zealand agriculture, in the wake of the Christchurch terror attack.
The Communications Manager for the Forest Owners Association told The Country's Jamie Mackay, "I think it's appropriate that New Zealand agriculture stands in support of the Muslim community in New Zealand by thanking them."
Carson said he has been "deeply immersed in the politics and the business of halal certification," throughout his career, starting in the 80s at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and managing a Halal certification company for three years until 2011.
"I think that New Zealand agriculture and pastoral industries owe a huge debt to now 40 years of Halal certification, provided not just to our meat industry but also our dairy industry, because many countries require certification on dairy products and meat products."
"I think it would be appropriate if the meat ... and dairy industry association stood together and celebrated that 40 years ... I don't know how you'd go about organising an event, but I think one should be organised in an ongoing legacy recognised in some form."
The terror attack on Friday has affected Carson personally due to his close connection to the Muslim community, but he is heartened to see how Kiwis have rallied together in support.
"I went the vigil at the Basin Reserve last night and it was absolutely crammed ... it was a wonderful expression that they were standing in solidarity for those 50 who had perished in Christchurch."
It is important to put politics aside and come together as one people when faced with such tragic events said Carson.
"It's all raw at the moment ... for me certainly it is, but let's deal with the politics later ... my heart goes out to the ummah, my brothers and sisters in Christchurch."