European Halal Services Limited takes certification very seriously and as such we inspect all ingredients thoroughly and ensure that any raw materials derive from animal sources is Halal compliant. Our ingredients checks and manufacturing flow charts of raw materials are initially checked by a Muslim chemist before being signed off. The next stage involves one of our trained Muslim auditors visiting the respective manufacturing site and undertaking a detailed site audit. This is a requirement by our Halal Standard, which is in line with the International Halal Integrity Alliance (IHI) framework, with whom we work very closely.
Is Gelatine Halal?
Gelatine or Gelatin is a colorless water-soluble glutinous protein obtained from animal tissues such as bone and skin. It is used in a variety of products from food processes and health consumables to cosmetics and pharmaceuticals. A product labelled as having Gelatine, without details of the source of Gelatine is generally taken as emanating from pig or cattle source, hence Haram. It is however possible to produce Halal Gelatine from bones and skins of Halal slaughtered animals. In such cases the Gelatine will be certified as Halal and labelled as Halal Gelatine. EHS maintains and retains on record a copy of Halal certificates for the gelatine used by suppliers of the products we certify as Halal.
Do you certify products which include a very small percentage of Alcohol?
Simply, No. The term ‘alcohol’ is viewed differently by the layman and a scientist. To the layman, alcohol is just that, alcohol, but to a scientist it is ‘ethanol’ and it encompasses a whole range of different properties, especially in the personal care sector. The group of chemicals known as ‘Aliphatic Alcohols’ tend to cause intoxication when ingested, hence generally, under Islamic rulings for Halal certifications, ‘Aliphatic Alcohols’ are prohibited and therefore classed as Haram. But some Muslim scholars and Halal certification bodies have varying rulings on the level of ethanol that is 'allowable or permissible'. At EHS we take a zero tolerance policy on ethanol, providing Muslim consumers a completely alcohol-free product.
Can we consumer E-Numbers?
E-Numbers represent specific food additives, used by the food industry in the manufacturing of food products. Generally E-numbers deriving from animals and insects are Haram – unless the animal source has been certified as Halal slaughtered. Many E-numbers are permitted and widely used in Islamic countries, however this does not mean all additives are always Halal. If they derive from plants, they are Halal otherwise; you must check the source or ingredient supplier for accurate information.
Is Chocolate Liquor Halal?
Chocolate Liquor, also known as ‘cocoa liquor’ is a smooth, thick, liquid form of chocolate and the purest form of chocolate, produced by grinding cacao beans. Chocolate liquor contains roughly 50% cocoa solids (cocoa powder) and 50% cocoa butter and is the pale-yellow vegetable fat of the cacao bean. Commonly used in baking, sweets and drinks, is does not contain alcohol and is Halal. Can we consume mono and diglycerides? Mono- and diglycerides are fats. They come from both animal and vegetable sources and can be made from oil, usually soybean, cottonseed, sunflower, or palm oil and act as emulsifiers (providing a consistent texture and preventing separation). They are used in most baked products to keep them from going stale. If they derive from animals, they would be considered Haram, unless the animal was Halal slaughtered. If the source of origin for mono & diglycerides is vegetable such as soy or canola, it would be deemed Halal.
Can we eat / use Shellac?
Shellac is made from crushed beetles and although some Muslim scholars allow it, many Ulema consider Shellac as not permissible in any shape or form. At European Halal Services Limited we have taken the latter stance and do not certify any products containing Shellac.
Is Lecithin Halal?
Lecithin is an emulsifier found in plants like soybeans, in egg yolks and in animals. Lecithin that contains phosphatidyl choline is produced mainly from vegetable sources, although it may also be found in animal and microbial sources. Majority of commercial lecithins sold in the market today come from soybean (mostly), sunflower, and grape seed, which would be deemed as Halal. Otherwise you much check with the producer for the original source of the lecithin. Is White Wine Vinegar Halal? White Wine is Khamr (intoxicants) and not permissible in Islam. However many Muslim Ulema argue that due to the process of Istihalah (transformation); all white wine is converted into vinegar, which is Halal. At European Halal Services Limited, we take the stance that unless we are shown through independent laboratory tests that all the white wine is converted into vinegar, we will not certify the white wine vinegar as Halal.
Is GM Food acceptable?
Genetically Modified foods or GMO’s (Genetically Modified Organisms) are foods that have been artificially changed in a laboratory. They are most commonly used to refer to crop plants created for human or animal consumption using the latest molecular biology techniques. Muslims scholars meeting in Malaysia in 2010 deemed GM foods as Halal as long as the source is Halal. However many Muslims and non-Muslims challenge the usage of GM crops on the premise that there is a lack of adequate scientific understanding of their impact both environmentally and health-wise. At EHS we do not certify GM as our scientists believe there are many complex scientific and ethical issues yet to be explored with reference to such foods.
Frequently Asked Questions