This paper explores Malaysia's bid to become the world leader in rapidly expanding halal (lawful or permitted) markets on a global scale. Over the last three decades, a powerful state nationalism has emerged, represented by the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO), the dominant political party in Malaysia. The state has effectively certified, standardised and bureaucratised Malaysian halal production, trade and consumption. Now, the vision is to export this model, and for that purpose the network as a strategic metaphor is being evoked to signify connectedness and prescriptions of organisation vis-à-vis more deep-rooted networks. Building on empirical material from research in Malaysia and Britain, I shall show how networks are understood and practised in a metaphorical sense.