In principle, alcohol derived from grapes and dates is not permissible

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by Askimam.org

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh,

Can you please advise that whether Nestle Smarties which are sold in the UK are considered halal based on the following information obtained from Nestle UK:-

Smarties sold in the UK are listed as Suitable for Vegetarians but not Halal due to the following explanation given by Nestle UK.

” We make very little use of alcohol in our confectionery, however Ethyl Alcohol (Ethanol) is used in the processing of a product as a carrier which evaporates during the manufacture. This process is used in the following confectionery products:-

Tooty Frooties, Polo Fruits, Jelly Tots, Smarties and Yorkie Biscuits.”

I asked them a question in relation to the source of Ethyl Alcohol & their response was below:-

My Question to Nestle UK

“Can you please specify the source of Ethyl Alcohol (Ethanol) & from where it is derived from i.e. from grapes or dates?”

Nestle UK Response

“In answer to your enquiry, a flavouring extract that contains traces of residual ethyl alcohol, which are technologically unavoidable, has been used in this formula before spray drying. Ethyl alcohol used as extraction solvent does not come from the spirits industry.”

So based on the above information can you please advise that whether Smarties which are sold in the UK are considered Halal as a lot of Muslims are eating them based on that firstly they are suitable for Vegetarians & all the alcohol is evaporated during their manufacturing? I am not convinced based on the above so want a conclusive response that whether they will be considered Halal or Haram for Muslims.

I have asked the same question in Fatwa # 32218 but never said a conclusive response.

JazakAllah Khair.

Answer

In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh

In principle, alcohol derived from grapes and dates is not permissible. However alcohol derived from any substance other than grapes and dates is permissible provided the alcohol does not intoxicate, not used for futility and vain and not used for deliberate intoxication.

 

With regards to your specific question, if the ethyl alcohol is derived from grapes and dates, then it is not permissible for one to consume such a product. However, if the ethyl alcohol is derived from any substance other than grapes and dates and the above stated conditions are fulfilled, then it is permissible for one to consume such products. 

 

We cannot issue a specific ruling on the Halal nature of Smarties sold in the UK since we do not have full knowledge of the ingredients contained within the product. You may contact the Halal Monitoring Committee based in the UK on the following contact details: http://www.halalhmc.org/. They will advise you on the specifics of the product from a Halal perspective.

 

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

 

Ismail Desai,

Darul Iftaa

 

Checked and Approved,

Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

 

 

 

 

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