Kosher and halal are two dietary guidelines followed by many people of Jewish and Muslim faith, respectively. These guidelines dictate what foods are permissible for consumption, and often involve restrictions on certain types of animal products.
One ingredient that is a point of debate among those who follow these dietary guidelines is gelatin.
Is kosher gelatin halal? In this blog post, we will explore the issue of whether kosher gelatin is considered halal, and examine the factors that are taken into consideration when making this determination.
Is Kosher Gelatin Halal?
Yes, kosher gelatin is halal if it is from slaughtered kosher meat. This is because the meat is halal. It is also permissible if the kosher gelatin is from fish or vegetarian sources.
However, if it is from pig or an unslaughtered animal, ‘kosher gelatin’, it would not be halal. This would have to be ascertained by the appropriate source (whether the company or the Rabbi that approves, etc).
According to IslamQA, there is nothing wrong with the Muslim eating Jewish foods on which the word “kosher” is written unless it is known that they have added any alcohol to it.
As for gelatin extracted from animals that have not been slaughtered according to Shariah, Sheikh Abdus-Sattar F. Saeed, Professor of the Exegesis of the Qur’an at Al-Azhar University, states that:
“If the animal is slaughtered by one of the People of the Scripture, or if the butcher is unknown, then the meat is Halal and the gelatin is Halal too. However, if the animal is slaughtered by means of electric shock, suffocation, and other unlawful ways, then the meat is Haram and gelatin is Haram too, because it is a product of that unlawful animal”.
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Note that there are cases where kosher gelatin is not halal. This is due to a difference of opinion amongst Jewish rabbis about what is considered food.
Some rabbis believe that gelatin is not food. The reason behind this is that during the making of gelatin, the substance is treated with acid, rendering it inedible.
This fails a common Jewish test that considers anything that is inedible for a dog to not be food. Thus, some rabbis believe that gelatin is not food, and cannot be non-kosher.
For these reasons, there is gelatin available in the market labelled as kosher without any consideration of the animal species or the method of slaughter. So, it’s quite possible for gelatin labeled as kosher to not be halal.