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Updates – 2001

Most Chips Ahoy! cookies don’t contain lard

(January 31, 2001)  We previously reported that Chips Ahoy! cookies contained lard in Canada. We have now discovered that not all types of Chips Ahoy! cookies contain lard. ChewyShortcake, and RainbowChips Ahoy! do not contain lard and are safe for consumption by Muslims. Lard is the fat of pigs or hogs that is melted down and made clear. It must always be avoided by Muslims.

Tim Hortons baked goods still free of animal ingredients  Please seeUPDATED INFO

(February 11, 2001) For the past few years, Tim Hortons baked products have been known to be free of ingredients obtained from animal sources. But rumours recently surfaced about the validity of the information, and I.H.F.M. Canada was asked to look into the matter. Tim Hortons has again confirmed that all their baked goods still continue to be free from all animal ingredients. For more information, Tim Hortons Customer Service can be contacted toll-free at (888) 601-1616. Tim Hortons operates over 2000 franchises across Canada.

Whey in Canadian Sara Lee layer cakes contains no animal rennet

(February 18, 2001) I.H.F.M. Canada has learned that the whey contained in some Sara Lee layer cakes sold in Canada does not contain animal rennet. Instead, the rennet used in manufacturing the whey is obtained from a microbial source. Whey is the  watery part of milk that separates from the curd when cheese is made.

All Kraft cheese products in Canada should be avoided Please seeCLARIFICATION

(February 25, 2001) Kraft Canada has informed us that three types of enzymes – pepsin, rennet, and microbial enzymes – are used in their cheese products in Canada. These ingredients are always listed on the product labels. Depending on the availability of the source at the time of production, any of the three ingredients may be used. For this reason, we advise Muslims to avoid all Canadian Kraft cheese products. Please seeUPDATE

Some frozen McCain pizzas now permissible

(March 5, 2001) McCain Foods has changed the ingredients of its frozen pizzas in Canada. As a result, the following pizzas have been found to be safe for consumption by Muslims:

  • McCain 3 Cheese Microwave Pizza
  • McCain 4 Cheese Rising Crust Pizza
  • McCain Pizza Premiere Vegetarian Pizza

These pizzas are available in the freezer section of most Canadian supermarkets. All other McCain pizzas should be avoided as they may contain haram toppings or other haram ingredients.

Clarification: Kraft Cheese Products

(March 10, 2001) In our February 25 update, we advised people to avoid ALL Kraft cheese products because of possible use of animal ingredients. However, the information we received applies only to Kraft cheese slices, blocks, and spreads in Canada. The information does NOT apply to cream cheeses, etc. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.

Some Subway items are halal

(March 14, 2001) Some food items served at Subway® restaurants in Canada have been found to be halal. The following Subway® food items may be consumed by Muslims: All breads except Parmesan oregano bread, tuna, vegetables, and condiments.  All other Subway®menu and side items should be avoided. Please note that we do not recommend that Muslims eat out in non-Muslim eateries, because of the possibility of contamination with haram ingredients and dirty utensils.

Q. Are the Subway® seafood subs also halal?

Beware of gelatin in multivitamins

(March 18, 2001) Most multivitamin tablets available in pharmacies nowadays contain gelatin. Gelatin is an odorless, tasteless, protein substance like glue or jelly, obtained by boiling the bones, hoofs, and other waste parts of animals. Before purchasing any vitamin or multivitamin tablets, make sure that gelatin is not listed in the non-medicinal ingredients on the packaging.

Hostess Frito-Lay list revisedoutdated

(March 25, 2001) The list of Hostess Frito-Lay products containing animal related ingredients has been revised. The following products are listed:

  • DORITOS brand Smokey Red BBQ and Zesty Cheese tortilla chips
  • RUFFLES brand Dip (all varieties) and The Works Patato Chips
  • SUNCHIPS brand French Onion Flavour and Harvest Cheddar Flavour Multigrain Snacks
  • CHESTERS brand Cheddar Crunchits Flavour
  • MISS VICKIES Sea Salt and Malt Vinegar
  • SMARTFOOD brand White Cheddar Flavour

All of the above-mentioned products contain animal related ingredients and should be avoided by all Muslims.

Harvey’s new crispy fries are halal

(March 25, 2001) The new crispy fries recently introduced by Harvey’s are halal. The ingredients used are all halal and the fries are fried separately. Their oil is not shared with other items. Harvey’s has also informed us that their Veggieburger is cooked on the same grill as the meat products, however, there is a designated space on the grill which is devoted to cooking only the Veggieburger. Separate spatulas are used for the hamburgers and the veggieburgers. Please note that we do not recommend that Muslims eat out in non-Muslim eateries, because of the possibility of contamination with haram ingredients and dirty utensils.

McCain desserts contain lard, gelatin

(April 1, 2001) McCain Triple Chill, Deep’n Delicious, Delite, and Cream Pie frozen desserts all contain either lard or gelatin. Lard is the fat of pigs or hogs, melted down and made clear. Gelatin is an odorless, tasteless, protein substance like glue or jelly, obtained by boiling the bones, hoofs, and other waste parts of animals. These products are sold in the freezer section of most supermarkets. They must be avoided by Muslims.

Soup seasoning in noodles could be haram

(April 8, 2001) The soup seasoning in noodles could contain haram flavourings. Many beef, pork, and chicken flavoured noodles contain flavourings extracted from animals, while others contain artificial flavouring. The flavourings extracted from animals are taken from haram and non-zabihah animals. As a result, they must be avoided. Muslim consumers must be very cautious when purchasing such products.

Gelatin capsules should be avoided

(April 15, 2001) Nowadays, many medications such as pain relievers and antibiotics are readily available in gelatin capsules, better known as gelcaps. Most of these medications are also alternatively available in the form of gelatin-free tablets. Muslims should try to avoid gelcaps whenever possible. Ask your doctor to prescribe gelatin-free tablets or liquid instead of gelcaps. Gelatin is an odorless, tasteless, protein substance like glue or jelly, obtained by boiling the bones, hoofs, and other waste parts of animals.

Natural vanilla extract in The Decadent is halal

(April 22, 2001) eat-halal.com has discovered that President’s Choice brand The Decadent cookies are halal. According to a company spokesperson, the natural vanilla extract in the cookies is not extracted in alcohol. The spokesperson also added that the cookies do not contain any alcohol or animal ingredients or their by-products. President’s Choice products are available nationwide in stores owned by supermarket giant Loblaw Companies Ltd.

Lilydale chickens are slaughtered mechanically 

(April 29, 2001) eat-halal.com has learned that “halal” labeled Lilydalechicken products, certified by ISNA Canada, are slaughtered mechanically. The chickens are processed at Lilydale’s Wynyard, Saskatchewan plant. According to a company spokesperson, the chickens are slaughtered by machine and they are blessed by Muslims recommended and authorized by ISNA Canada. Mechanically slaughtered animals are not considered Zabihah and should be avoided by all Muslims.

Related:  Fatwas on mechanical slaughter   |   Mechanical slaughter poll results

Some Equality brand Cheese Sticks should be avoided

(May 6, 2001) Muslims should be cautious when buyingEquality brand Cheese Sticks. Some packages contain the kosher sign  on the front and some don’t. To be on the safe side, packages which do NOT contain  should be avoided. Since the product contains milk ingredients, the  guarantees that it does not contain any other animal related ingredient(s), because according to Jewish law, meat and dairy ingredients cannot be combined and consumed at the same time. Equality brand products are available in A&P, Food Basics, and Dominion stores in Canada.

Avoid Nestle SMA Infant Formula

(May 13, 2001) Nestle has informed eat-halal.com that the whey in SMA Infant Formula in Canada contains animal rennet. Whey is the watery part of milk that separates from the curd when cheese is made. Animal rennet is used to curd the milk. For this reason, we advise all Muslims to avoid the product.

X-treme Cheese topping, Caesar Salad, Bocci Bits haram at Pizza Pizza OUTDATED Click here

(May 20, 2001) The optional X-treme Cheese topping at Pizza Pizza has been found to contain goat lipase and therefore should be avoided. The Caesar Salad and Bocci Bits also contain haram cheese and should be avoided. All other cheese used in the pizzas are halal, as are the dough and sauce. Pizza Pizza operates over 300 stores, mainly in Ontario.

Most ice creams at Baskin Robbins contain alcohol

(May 27, 2001) All flavours of ice cream at Baskin Robbins, with the exception of chocolate, contain flavourings extracted in alcohol. This is true for Canada and the United States. In Saudi Arabia and other overseas markets, the flavourings are not extracted in alcohol. For this reason, we ask Muslims in Canada and the United States to avoid all Baskin Robbins ice creams except for the chocolate flavour. Baskin Robbins has over 4600 locations worldwide. 

Lard in Christie Coffee Breaks

(June 3, 2001) Muslims in Canada should take note of the fact that Christie Coffee Breaks cookies, manufactured byNabisco Ltd., contain lard, and therefore must be avoided. Lard is the fat of pigs or hogs which is melted down and made clear. Lard must always be avoided by all Muslims.

Burger King fries now halal; Wendy’s fries should be avoided

(June 9, 2001) Burger King has informed eat-halal.com that their fries in Canada are now cooked in oil that is not used for frying any animal products. Previously, the fries were cooked in oil that was shared with other meat products. The fries do not contain any animal ingredients and are therefore halal. On the other hand, Wendy’s has informed us that their fries may be cooked in same oil as Chicken Nuggets. For this reason, Wendy’s fries should be avoided.

“Muslim” meals on airlines may not be totally halal

(June 17, 2001) A spokesman for Cara’s Airport Services division has told eat-halal.com that the only thing that is checked for being halal in “Muslim” meals is the meat. This means that haram ingredients could be used to cook the meat and other items in the meal could contain haram ingredients as well. The spokesman also stated that the chickens being used in “Muslim” meals are being supplied by Maple Lodge Farms. Maple Lodge Farms chickens are slaughtered mechanically and mechanically slaughtered animals are not considered Zabihah and should be avoided by Muslims. Cara is Canada’s leader in airline catering, serving over 50 domestic and international airlines out of 12 flight kitchens across Canada.

Related info: Fatwas on mechanical slaughter

Some Good Humor-Breyers products contain alcohol; list of alcohol-free products available

(June 24, 2001) eat-halal.com has obtained a list ofGood Humor-Breyers products in Canada whichdo not contain alcohol. Some ice creams, frozen yogurts, sherbets, popsicles, and other products manufactured by Good Humor-Breyers contain flavourings extracted in alcohol. For this reason, all Good Humor-Breyers products, except for the ones listed, should be avoided by Muslims. View list of Good Humor-Breyers products in Canada which DO NOT contain alcohol

Harvest Crunch Light and Crisp should be avoided

(July 1, 2001) Harvest Crunch Light and Crisp crereal, manufactured byThe Quaker Oats Company of Canada, contains vanilla extract. The company has informed eat-halal.com that the ingredient contains ethyl alcohol. For this reason, the product should be avoided by Muslims. For more information, contact Quaker Oats customer service at (800) 267-OATS.

Country Style donuts contain whey  Please see UPDATED INFO

(July 8, 2001) Country Style has informed eat-halal.com that their donuts contain whey. The company representative could not confirm whether animal rennet is used in the production of the whey. However, she added that most chances are that the rennet is from animal source. For this reason, we advise Muslims to avoid Country Style donuts. Country Style operates over 350 locations throughout Canada. For more information, contact Country Style at (905) 764-7066.

Rennet in Camembert Kiplait cheese not from animal source

(July 15, 2001) J.L. Freeman, the local distributor of the Camembert Kiplait cheese, has informed eat-halal.com that the rennet used in the cheese is not from an animal source. Instead, the rennet used is from a microbial source. eat-halal.com was asked to look into the matter after the product in question was served at a major Muslim event held recently in Montreal. However, the organizers recalled the product once the suspicious ingredient was brought to their attention. The cheese is a product of France and is distributed here by J.L. Freeman. They can be reached at (450) 641-6496.

No alcohol in Ethyl Maltol

(July 22, 2001) The word ‘ethyl’ in Ethyl Maltol leads some people to believe that it contains alcohol. In fact, it does not contain any alcohol, nor is any alcohol used in its production. Ethyl Maltol is a flavoring agent available in a white crystalline powder form. It is obtained by chemical synthesis of agricultural crop waste, and is halal.

Whey in No Name Vanilla Ice Milk Bars Halal

(July 29, 2001) eat-halal.com has been told that the whey in No NameVanilla Ice Milk bars does not contain any animal rennet. The rennet used in the production of the whey is from a vegetable source and is therefore Halal. Whey is the watery part of milk that separates from the curd when milk sours and becomes coagulated, or when cheese is made. No Name and President’s Choice customer service can be contacted through the Loblaws Store Locator at (800) 296-2332.

Avoid Jalapeno White Cheddar Cheese dip at Pizza Pizza

(August 4, 2001) Pizza Pizza has informed eat-halal.com that their Jalapeno White Cheddar Cheese dip contains animal rennet. For this reason, it should be avoided. None of the other pizza dips at Pizza Pizza contain any haram ingredients. Pizza Pizza can be reached at (416) 236-1894.

No more gelatin in Spring Valley yogurt

(August 12, 2001) On March 5, 2000, eat-halal.com reported that Spring Valley yogurt, manufactured by Ultima Foods, contained gelatin. This has now changed and Spring Valley yogurt does not contain gelatin or any other haram ingredients. For this reason, the above mentioned product may be consumed by Muslims. (Web posted 08.12.01 @ 6.45 pm)

Whey in Country Style donuts halal, no animal ingredients used

(August 20, 2001) On July 8, 2001, we reported that Country Style donuts contained whey and that there was a possibility that animal rennet was being used in the production of that whey. Country Style has now informed eat-halal.com that the whey used in their donuts does not contain any animal rennet. The company spokeswoman also added that their donuts do not contain any animal ingredients. Country Style can be reached at (905) 764-7066. (Web posted 08.20.01 @ 10.47 am)

Alcohol-based flavourings used in some items at Tim Hortons

(August 25, 2001) eat-halal.com has learned that alcohol-based flavourings are used in the following items at Tim Hortons:

  • Black Forest Cake
  • Almond, Cherry, Pineapple, Strawberry, Vanilla, and Plain White Cake Icings

For this reason, the above-mentioned items are haram and should be avoided by all Muslims. Tim Hortons can be contacted at (888) 601-1616.(Web posted 08.25.01 @ 7.08 pm)

Alcohol may be used in flavourings in Dairy Queen soft serve

(September 2, 2001) eat-halal.com has been told byDairy Queen Canada that Dairy Queen vanilla and chocolate soft serve may contain traces of alcohol in their artificial flavorings. Dairy Queen soft serve is used in almost all of their ‘Cool Treats’, including the following:

  • Peanut Buster® Parfait
  • Pecan Mudslide™
  • Brownie Earthquake™
  • The Original! Blizzard® Flavor Treats
  • Banana Split

Since Dairy Queen chocolate and vanilla soft serve may contain alcohol in their flavourings, it is suggested that Dairy Queen items made from them be avoided by Muslims. Dairy Queen Canada can be reached at (905) 639-1492. (Web posted 09.02.01 @ 5.22 pm – Updated 04.27.02 @ 4.59 pm)

Yop doesn’t contain gelatin anymore

(September 9, 2001) On February 20, 2000, we reported that the yogurt drink Yop contained gelatin. Gelatin is an odorless, tasteless, protein substance like glue or jelly, obtained by boiling the bones, hoofs, and other waste parts of animals. Yop used to contain gelatin, but that isn’t the case anymore. Yop is manufactured by Ultima Foods, which is also the manufacturer of Spring Valley yogurt. (Web posted 09.09.01 @ 3.14 pm)

Fries and chicken fried in same oil at Joey’s; seafood could be too

(September 16, 2001) eat-halal.com has learned that the fries at Joey’s Only Seafood Restaurants are cooked in the same oil in which chickens are fried. The seafood at the restaurant may also be fried in the same oil. For this reason, Muslims should avoid eating at the restaurant. Joey’s Only Seafood Restaurants can be contacted at (800) 661-2123.(Web posted 09.16.01 @ 5.47 pm)

Alcohol used in some Little Debbie products, investigation ongoing

(September 23, 2001) eat-halal.com has discovered that alcohol is used in the flavourings contained in some Little Debbieproducts. McKee Foods, the manufacturer of Little Debbie products, has confirmed that flavourings containing alcohol are used in Zebra Cakes, Swiss Cake Rolls, and Oatmeal Creme Pies. These products should be avoided by Muslims. The investigation into other Little Debbie products is currently ongoing. McKee Foods can be reached at (800) 522-4499. (Web posted on 09.23.01 @ 4.52 pm)

Some Nestlé chocolates may contain whey, not listed on label

(September 30, 2001) A concerned Muslim in Dubai tipped off eat-halal.com about the fact that some Nestlé chocolates could contain whey. Nestlé Canada has confirmed that the ‘milk ingredients’ listed on the ingredients label of some Nestlé chocolates may contain whey, but the company was unable to specify whether or not animal rennet is used in the production of that whey. Nestlé’s Kit Kat, Aero, Smarties, and Coffee Crisp are among the affected products. Although these products cannot be labeled as being Haram, it would be better to avoid them. Nestlé Canada can be reached at (800) 387-4636. (Web posted 09.30.01 @  5.17 pm)

New information from Country Style

(October 7, 2001) Country Style has supplied eat-halal.com with the following information:

  • Chocolate Brownies and Maple Donut Icings contain alcohol
  • Black Forest, Lemon, and Cappuccino cakes contain alcohol
  • All baked products are free of animal ingredients
  • All rennet sources in whey powder are from microbial source
  • Tender Tuna and Good ol’ Egg Sandwich Fillings do not contain any Haram ingredients
  • Cream Soups do not contain any animal rennet
  • Garden Fresh Pita contains all Halal ingredients
  • Cheese in baked products could have animal rennet

Country Style operates over 350 outlets across Canada. For more information, contact Country Style at (905) 764-7066. (Web posted 10.07.01 @  3.56 pm)

Some vegetarian dishes not 100% ‘vegetarian’ at Mandarin

(October 14, 2001) eat-halal.com has learned that vegetarian dishes atMandarin are not 100% vegetarian. In a letter forwarded to eat-halal.com by a concerned Muslim, a Mandarin representative admits that “dishes in the ‘Vegetarian Delights’ on our take-out menu contain small amounts of chicken base which we use to season the food”. The representative goes on to say that “the Garlic Broccoli, Sauteed Mixed Chinese Vegetables and Tofu with Mixed Chinese Vegetables also contain small amounts of oyster sauce”. The representative says that if the customer requires, the dishes can be cooked without the objectionable ingredients. Mandarin has 13 locations across Ontario. For more information, call (905) 451-4100. (Web posted 10.14.01 @  4.35 pm)

Cheese in Christie Original Bits & Bites

(October 21, 2001) Christie Original Bits & BitesSnack Mix, manufactured by Nabisco Ltd., has been found to contain cheese. Upon investigation, eat-halal.com learned that the cheese could contain pepsin, rennet, or microbial enzymes. For this reason, the product should be avoided. Nabisco can be reached at (800) 668-2253. (Web posted 10.21.01 @  6.21 pm)

No animal rennet currently being used in MK certified products

(October 28, 2001) The Jewish Community Council of Montreal has told eat-halal.com that no animal rennet is used in products certified by them. Products certified Kosher by the Council are marked with MK and a circle around it. The rennet used in the whey in MK certified products is also from a non-animal source. Rennet from Kosher animals may be used in MK certified products in the future, but the Council has agreed to inform us when that occurs. This means that the rennet and whey currently being used in MK certified products are Halal. It should be kept in mind though that this does not mean that all Kosher or MK certified products are Halal. The Jewish Community Council of Montreal may be reached at (514) 739-6363. (Web posted 10.28.01 @  3.01 pm)

Not all Starburst candies contain gelatin

(November 4, 2001) eat-halal.com has discovered that not all Starburstcandies contain gelatin. While most types of Starburst candies contain gelatin, Starburst Jelly Beans and Fruit Twists do not contain gelatin. Gelatin is an odourless, tasteless, protein substance like glue or jelly, obtained by boiling the bones, hoofs, and other waste parts of animals. Products containing gelatin from Haram animals must be avoided by Muslims. (Web posted 11.04.01 @  3.24 pm)

Avoid Our Compliments brand Macaroni and Cheese

(November 12, 2001) Sobeys has told eat-halal.com that their Our Compliments brand Macaroni and Cheese contains animal ingredients. For this reason, the product should be avoided. Our Compliments brand products are sold at supermarkets owned by Sobeys Inc., including Sobeys, IGA, and Price Chopper. Sobeys can be contacted at (888) 821-5557. (Web posted 11.12.2001 @ 5.42 pm)

Donuts at Robin’s Donuts contain whey, gelatin in glazed ones 

(November 17, 2001) Robin’s Donuts has informed eat-halal.com that all their donut mixes contain whey. However, it is unclear whether animal rennet is used in the production of that whey. Also, all glazed donuts at Robin’s Donuts containgelatin. For these reasons, we suggest that all donuts at Robin’s Donuts be avoided. Robin’s Donuts operates over 240 locations across Canada and can be contacted at (807) 623 4453. (Web posted 11.17.01 @ 4.14 pm)

Better to avoid all Taco Bell items except fries

(November 25, 2001) After evaluating information received from Taco Bell Canada, eat-halal.com has decided that it would be in the best interest of Muslims to avoid all items served at the restaurant, except for the fries. The fries at Taco Bell are Halal, but that cannot be said with certainty about many other items. For this reason, all Taco Bell food items in Canada, except for the fries, should be avoided. Taco Bell can be reached at (877) 342 5532. (Web posted 11.25.01 @ 5.03 pm)

Not all Saputo cheeses free of animal ingredients

(December 3, 2001) It is commonly thought in Muslim circles that all Saputo cheeses are free of animal ingredients and Halal. However, eat-halal.com has learned that that is not the case. A Saputo spokesman told eat-halal.com that although most of their products are free of animal ingredients such as animal rennet and pepsin, the following products may not be:

  • Saputo Feta Cheese
  • Saputo Provolone Cheese
  • Saputo Grated Romano and Parmesan Cheeses
  • Saputo Process Cheese (sliced)
  • Saputo Provella Cheese

For this reason, the above mentioned products should be avoided. Saputo can be contacted at (514) 328-6662. (Web posted 12.03.01 @ 5.04 pm)

Most Kellogg’s products free of animal ingredients; gelatin in some

(December 11, 2001) Kellogg Canada has told eat-halal.com that the majority of their products are free of animal ingredients. The only Kellogg Canada products which do contain animal ingredients are those which contain marshmallows, and those products contain gelatin. Products containing gelatin must be avoided by Muslims. Kellogg Canada can be contacted at (888) 876-3750. (Web posted 12.11.01 @ 6.55 pm)

Most COR certified products free of animal rennet

(December 17, 2001) A spokesman for the Kashruth Council of Toronto has told eat-halal.com that most (if not all) COR certified products are free of animal rennet. He said that while rennet from Kosher animals is allowed to be used, the rennet being used in most products is from non-animal sources. He also said that the rennet used in the production of whey is from non-animal sources. The Kashruth Council of Toronto can be reached at (416) 635-9550. (Web posted 12.17.01 @ 11.44 pm)

“Halal” signs and labels shouldn’t be taken for granted

(December 26, 2001) In the past few years, many stores, restaurants, and products have emerged, all of which claim to be Halal. While many are authentic, some unfortunately are not. For instance, some stores and restaurants are selling mechanically slaughtered chickens from Maple Lodge Farms. Mechanically slaughtered animals are not Zabihah. Many products such as salamis, sausages, etc., are also being made with mechanically slaughtered chickens from Maple Lodge Farms. Some products are being made in facilities where pork is also being processed, and if the machines are not sanitized properly, small amounts of pork can very easily get carried over into the “Halal” products. Many restaurants claim to be Halal, but just because they are using Halal meat and vegetable oil, it doesn’t mean that they are completely Halal. All other ingredients must also be Halal. For these reasons, we ask Muslims to start asking questions when purchasing food and food products which claim to be Halal. (Web posted 12.26.01 @ 12.17 pm)

Related info: Fatwas on mechanical slaughter

Cheese in “Truly” macaroni and cheese free of animal ingredients

(December 30, 2001) It has been brought to our attention from Regina, Saskatchewan, that the cheese in “Truly” brand macaroni and cheese dinners does not contain any animal ingredients. Most macaroni and cheese dinners in Canada come with cheese which contains animal ingredients. “Truly” brand products are available in Zellers stores across Canada.(Web posted 12.30.01 @ 8.35 pm)