Halal is an Islamic term that literally means anything that is permissible. Haram is the opposite of Halal which means forbidden.
Alcohol in Islamic culture is said to be Haram as it can intoxicate the one who ingests it. Hence, soy sauce that contains alcohol contents is said to be Haram though there are many logics that can prove that wrong.
To tell if soy sauce is Halal or Haram we must check the brewing process. There are majorly two processes of brewing soy sauce.
When is Soy Sauce considered Haram?
The natural process of brewing soy sauce involves the fermentation of soybeans and wheat to prepare it nicely and fluffy. It also prevents mould formation. But this fermentation process makes it contain about 2-3% alcohol which is considered Haram.
Many companies in the market sell 100% certified Halal products. You can check this website if you are someone who is looking for vegan, gelatin-free, and 100% Halal products.
However, a few Muslims argue that this small amount of alcohol content can not be intoxicating and hence it could be considered as Halal.
It is also supported by the fact that Haram is for the alcohol content derived from grapes or dates. As the soy sauce is made using soybeans and wheat, it can therefore be considered Halal.
When is Soy Sauce considered Halal?
Some Muslims strictly follow a diet that contains no percentages of alcohol. Hence, there is a fallback option to enjoy Chinese food or your sushi without having to worry if the soy sauce it has is Haram.
The soy sauce that is not naturally brewed or all-purpose soy sauce is said to have no alcohol content and is, therefore, Halal.
This non naturally brewed soy sauce is made from water, salt, corn syrup, hydrolyzed soy protein, and sodium benzoate.
Some food companies do not mention the process as naturally brewed soy sauce in the ingredients section. But they might mention in parentheses that it is made of wheat and soybeans.
But companies like Chewwies make it clear in their tagline itself that their products are 100% Halal certified as well as vegan and free of gelatin, sugar and gluten.
Is Halal just for a particular community?
Halal is definitely not just for a particular community of people. Eating Halal is the practice of eating healthy, just like taking vitamins during winter is important for your wellbeing. It is a process of respecting other animals and plants with which we co-exist.
Halal-certified products are manufactured with that extra attention to hygiene and are hence a safer option to consume. The best part is that they ship worldwide!
Halal products these days are quite easily found in stores or online through various websites.
The answer to the question of whether soy sauce is Halal or not lies in the process and ingredients using which it is manufactured.
It is never too late to adapt to a healthy and hygienic practice of eating!
Hence, Halal is one great method to ensure yourself that you are eating right.