Food additives are added to food to make it safer, keep it longer, stop the growth of bacteria, mould, and stop food going stale. They also aid processing as emulsifiers, raising agents, preservatives and improve food in terms of
color, taste, texture and nutritional value.
Additives increase the variety of food available to consumers keeping prices down, allowing safe delivery of food to urban populated areas and create alternatives to traditional food like meat substitutes for meat, low fat products for butter and
yogurt and sugar free drinks for diabetics.
The use of additives is strictly controlled by law. They may not be used in food unless they are on approved
government supervised list, proving their safe and effective usage. Once approved by the EC it is then given an
'E' number and is constantly monitored by local government and the EEC.
EEC directives require all food to list ingredients of the various products used because additives being so complicated by way of understanding leave alone pronouncing would have ingredients look like a chemist's dictionary.
The 'E' numbers were introduced to make it easier for EEC countries to come to a uniform system of regulating the additives industry.
We are publishing a list of numbers, some of which are Haraam and some of which are doubtful, because of its doubtful nature Muslims have to refrain from them as well.
E120 Cochineal (Carmine of Cochineal Carminicago, C.I.75490, derived from the insect Dactilopius
E160 Alfa-Carotene, Beta-Carotene, Gamma-Carotene.
E471 Mono and Di-Glycerides of fatty acids. When Glycerol is used one has to find out the source whether animal or synthetic.
E472 (a-e) Lactic acid esters of mono- and di-glycerides of fatty acids. Prepared from esters of Glycerol.
E473 Sucrose esters of fatty acids prepared from Glycerol and Sucrose.
E474 Sycroglycerides prepared by reaction of Sucrose on natural triglycerides (from
pal moil, lard, etc.)
E475 Polyglycerol esters of Fatty acids. Prepared in the laboratory.
E476 Polyglycerol esters of polycondensed fatty acids of castor oil (polyglycerol polyricinoleate). Prepared from Castor Oil and Glycerol esters.
E477 Propane-1,2-idol esters of fatty acids (Propylene Glycol esters of Fatty acids). Prepared from Propylene Glycol.
E478 Lactylated fatty acid esters of glycerol and propane-1,2-idol. Prepared from esters of glycerol and Lactic acid.
E631 Insine (Disodium Phosphate, Sodium and Inosinate). The Disodium Salt of Inosinate Acid which can be prepared from insect or fish extract.
E635 A mixture of disodium guanylare and disodium inosinate.
The same source as 631.
E640/920 L-Cysteine Hydrochloride and L-Cysteine hydrochloride mono hydrate. A naturally occurring amino acid manufactured from animal hair and chicken feathers.
All other 'E' number additives at the time of publication are
Halal, because of the ruling of Tabdeel-e-Mahiyat. Please refer to our article elsewhere in this book on this subject.
Except the following:
E473, E474, E475, E476, E477, E478, E631, E635, E640, E920
E904 Shellac: a substance obtained from the resin produced by the Lac insect, mainly found in India. The secretions are bleached and dried before usage on confectionary, chocolate panning, ice creams latter and the shining of fruit, mainly apples.
This E number is also under investigation. We have had discussions with one of the companies regarding this
E number and whether its secretion falls under the category of being Taahir (pure) or Najas (impure). We request readers to please look out for the report /update.