What is the Islamic law about chocolates or other products containing alcohol or gelatin?
I have a question and I hope you will answer it. I am living in a non-Islamic country. Here it is difficult for foreigners to find a job especially in today's tough economic times. Is there any objection in eating chocolates or other products which contain alcohol or gelatin? What if the alcohol does not cause drunkenness?


The answer given to the foregoing question by Ayatollah Mahdi Hadavi Tehrani (may Allah grant him long life) is as under:


If gelatin is derived from vegetable for an animal which has been slaughtered according to Islamic law, it is halal and ritually pure. If it is likely to have been derived from halal source, it will be pure and if it is probable that it has been derived from vegetable it would be also halal to eat.


If a chemical change occurs in the original ingredients during the process of manufacturing the gelatin, it is clean and there is no problem at all in eating it even if the original ingredient may have been pork or meat of an animal which has not been slaughtered according to Islamic laws.


Alcohol is pure but it is not permissible to consume it. In case the amount of alcohol existing in food is so minute that the food is considered by the wise as having no alcohol, it is halal to eat. In case one doubts about it, it is treated as permissible to eat.