Fermented food is a kind of food that needs bacteria or microorganisms to processed the fermentation system. Nowadays, there are so many kinds of fermented foods.
Such as yogurt, cheese, bread, and some beverages are fermented food. The taste of this fermented food is so delicious so that everyone loves them. It believes in the things you can eat in Islam.
Fermented Food is Prophet Recommendation
Eating fermented food in Islam has some theories behind it. Is that Halal or Haram? Muslims believe that some fermented food is recommended to consume.
The Prophet of Muhammad is demanding the Muslims to consume the Kefir. Such as Yoghurt and Kefir, these kinds of foods are claimed as one of the most favorites of the Prophet Muhammad. In the Quran surah Al Insaan verse 5-6,
اِنَّ الْاَبْرَارَ يَشْرَبُوْنَ مِنْ كَأْسٍ كَانَ مِزَاجُهَا كَافُوْرًاۚ – ٥
“And for sure, people who like to drink will be served from a glass that contains water,”
عَيْنًا يَّشْرَبُ بِهَا عِبَادُ اللّٰهِ يُفَجِّرُوْنَهَا تَفْجِيْرًا – ٦
“(That) is the water spring (in heaven) that Allah’s servants drink and they can shine it as well as possible.“
Any kind of food that give the benefits for the body and not give harm effects is Halal to consume. Such as yogurt, Kefir, and cheese has high calcium that good to consume.
The level of alcohol is about 0.2 to 0.6 percent. That is a safe level of alcohol and great to consume. Based on the rules of drinking water in Islam, Kefir is one of the drink musts have by Muslims.
Kefir contains so much good nutrition that keeps the body healthy. It is also good for women that do breastfeeding. Muslims know that it is importance of breastfeeding in Islam for women. By consuming a good fermentation food will help the baby improve their immune system.
In Korean, there is famous fermented food such as Kimchi. In Japan, they have a rice wine calls the Sake. In Indonesia, we have Tempe, Tape, Brem, and many more that will only find in Indonesian food.
In midwest and western, people fermenting the grape into wine. All of the kind of wine has a unique taste, but how Islam regards these kinds of fermented food? Is that Halal to consume?
Is Fermented Food Halal?
The food industry is concern about its Halal product for Muslims. Scientist claims that fermented food is good for our body. In Mid Western, since a thousand years ago, fermentation is the best technique to preserve the food. People apparently knew that crushed fruit then stored them into the warm store can make the perfect alcoholic fermentation.
The fermentation process needs the involved from a microorganism, then the enzyme will mix perfectly through the food. That will make the change ingredients that contain the food.
Sometimes, the lactic-acid bacteria type in fermentation will produce a different type of food nutrition. Some of them change to the carbohydrate energy, and another one will produce the ethanol.
Consume high ethanol from food will harm the people. It will reduce consciousness and make the part of our body has disruption. Muslims believe that consume alcohol is Haram or prohibited.
That because misuse of alcohol will leads to toxicity. It may disrupt the body physically and mentally. Such as the effects of eating pork in Islam, consuming alcohol also has the same effect on it.
Based on the Quran, surah Al Maidah verse 90:
يٰٓاَيُّهَا الَّذِيْنَ اٰمَنُوْٓا اِنَّمَا الْخَمْرُ وَالْمَيْسِرُ وَالْاَنْصَابُ وَالْاَزْلَامُ رِجْسٌ مِّنْ عَمَلِ الشَّيْطٰنِ فَاجْتَنِبُوْهُ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُوْنَ – ٩٠
“O, believers! Indeed alcoholism, gambling, (sacrificing for) idols, and drawing fate with arrows, are abominable and include the actions of the devil. So stay away (actions) that you are lucky.”
So, based on that verse, any alcoholism that may cause drunk is forbidden in Islam. Since some fermented food has a high ethanol level, this is Haram to consume. Such as alcohol or any kind of wine is condemned. So, how about the fruit that includes ethanol?
Wine comes from the fermentation of grapes and has a high ethanol level from the fermentation process. Wine is alcohol type and Haram, but the grape is a kind of food and Halal to consume. Such as the Tape in Indonesia that contains about 6 up to 7 levels of alcohol, is still Halal to consume.
Some people claim that the consumption of the Khamar for medical needs is allowed. But, in the Quran surah Al Baqarah verse 219, it is said that is Haram to consume the Khamar in any condition.
يَسْـَٔلُوْنَكَ عَنِ الْخَمْرِ وَالْمَيْسِرِۗ قُلْ فِيْهِمَآ اِثْمٌ كَبِيْرٌ وَّمَنَافِعُ لِلنَّاسِۖ وَاِثْمُهُمَآ اَكْبَرُ مِنْ نَّفْعِهِمَاۗ
“They ask you (Muhammad) about the Khamar and gambling things. Say, ” In both of them there are grave sins and some benefits for human beings. But the sins outweigh the benefits.”
How to choose Halal Fermented Food?
In this modern life, there will be a halal label appears at the food package. This will help Muslims to choose their food. Even for fermented food, the Halal-certified will already appear from the food industry.
So, it is easy to pick which the food that Halal to consume or not from the shelves in the market. Sometimes, even if the Halal-certified already appears, Muslims still doubting the food. Then, the best way to check is to read the ingredients label.
That will help a lot for Muslims to choose. Some fermented food contains a histamine level beside the alcohol level. Such as alcohol, the histamine also not recommend to consume if its on a high level.
For some reason, Halal food is good to keep the body healthy. Just like other food, the fermented food, the Halal’s one also contains a lot of nutrition.
They contain high calcium, carbohydrate for energy resources, low fat, and some vitamins. That is why in Islam it is good to eat fermented food with that type. By consuming them regularly, it sticks with the tips for glowing skin in Islam.