As local Muslims observe Ramadan this month, many have heeded the holiday's
call for charity by going to a halal slaughterhouse in the rural Pierce
County town of Sumner.
There, on a few gravelly acres tucked against the mountains, they can have
lambs, cows and goats killed in accordance with Islamic dietary laws. Then,
they give the meat away or cook it for a fast-breaking feast to share with
friends and strangers.
But the slaughterhouse, called Crescent Custom Meats and the only halal one
in Washington, is in danger of closing down. That's because the city of
Sumner is proposing to change the zoning of the property to residential,
which means Crescent can still operate but won't be able to do much
The plant's president, Mohamed Aden, said a cap on expansion would severely
curtail business and possibly shut it down, because the aging facilities of
the slaughterhouse need much work to continue.
"That building is very old," said Aden, who is Ethiopian and opened the
business four years ago with a group of other East African immigrants. "We
cannot do anything...