Is E476 Halal or Haram?

Is E476 Halal or Haram

E Numbers

E numbers, where E stands for Europe, are codes assigned to specific substances permitted by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) to be used as food additives. The first E number was assigned to food coloring agents in 1962. Subsequently, more substances like preservatives, emulsifiers, stabilizers, thickeners, and gelling agents were added to the list.

The food industry uses food additives for most meals. In recent times, they are present in almost every household worldwide. But many of these are a concern from the health point of view as they often have serious health repercussions. Some of these harmful food additives are:

Flavour Enhancers: Monosodium glutamate (MSG E621) is a well-known example of flavor enhancers. It is present in crisps, instant noodles, and microwave and takeaway foods.

Aspartame: This artificial sweetener comprises of phenylalanine, aspartic acid, and methanol (a type of alcohol). Aspartame breaks down methanol in the body to form formaldehyde, formic acid (present in the venom of ants and bees).

Sulphites: This group of additives is often present in dried fruit, desiccated coconut, cordial, and wine. They trigger asthma attacks in sensitive individuals.

Propionates: This type of additive can occur naturally in foods (e.g. certain types of cheese). The effects depend on dosage and may range from migraines, bed-wetting, nasal congestion, racing heart to memory loss, eczema, and stomach ache.

Antioxidants: These antioxidants in food additives are synthetic chemicals that cause harm to the body.

Food Colours: The most common offenders in this category of additives are tartrazine (E102) and annatto (E160b). Synthetic colorings cause allergic reactions, including learning and behavioral problems in children.

Health hazards aside, most Muslims worldwide, particularly in the UK, show concern regarding their halal or haram status as Muslims and are very careful about consuming halal food only. In this blog, we will discuss the halal and haram nature of E476 – an emulsifier – so keep reading.


E476 is yellowish in color and is an emulsifier. Food products like chocolates, bread spreads, salads, and biscuits contain E 476.

Islamic Injunctions about Halal and Haram

According to the teachings of the Holy Quran, carrion, i.e. dead meat, the blood (of haram and halal animals), and swine (pig) meat, are haram. And also, if you slaughter any halal animal and dedicate it to others than Allah, it is haram.

The 157 verse of Surah Al-Ar’af prohibits Muslims from eating impure animals such as insects (some exceptions like locusts) and reptiles.

“Those who follow the messenger, the unlettered Prophet, whom they find mentioned in their own (scriptures),- in the law and the Gospel;– for he commands them what is just and forbids them what is evil; he allows them as lawful what is good (and pure) and prohibits them from what is bad (and impure); He releases them from their heavy burdens and from the yokes that are upon them. So it is those who believe in him, honor him, help him, and follow the light which is sent down with him,- it is they who will prosper.” (Surah7 verse 157.)


Is E476 Halal or Haram?

Certain plants and animals (swine) are great sources of E476, and so it is Mushbooh. The origin of Mushbooh is unclear, so it is difficult to categorize it as halal or haram. However, if the source of E476 in a product is plant fats, then it is halal to consume. And, if the source is pig fat, it is haram.

Food labels of the products may indicate E476 with other names. You should look out for the name PGPR in your food or other product containing E476.

In Summary

The Holy Quran and Sunnah are the two primary sources of guidance for all Muslim populace. In light of the Quran and Sunnah, E476 in food indicates haram food. Based on halal and haram principles, Islamic scholars deduce the halal and haram nature of modern substances like food additives.

E476 is an emulsifier, and according to Islamic scholars of almost every school of thought, it is mushbooh. Therefore, you must inquire about its origin before consuming it.

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