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Are Coffee Halal vs. Haram : Sorting Fact from Fiction

Coffee Halal or Haram

Is coffee halal or haram? As you may already know, coffee is one of the world’s most popular drinks. However, whether coffee and caffeine are halal or haram is a significant issue for Muslims. Halal is an Arabic term for something permissible for Muslims to perform, use or consume. Meanwhile, the opposite of it is called haram in Arabic.

The concept of halal and haram has been mentioned in Quran.

“Eat of the good, lawful things provided to you by Allah; and be mindful of Allah in Whom you believe.”

Surah Al-Ma’idah (88)

Halal in this verse not only refers to how the food is obtained but is also related to the content and benefits for the body.

Then, are all coffees halal? That is one of the questions we will explore in the discussion below. So whether you are a coffee shop owner or simply learning more about the halal status of coffee, keep reading!

Is Coffee and Caffeine Halal?

Halal Logo
Halal Logo in FnB

The Quran is not explicit in discussing the halal status of coffee and caffeine. However, suppose we refer to Surah Al-Ma’idah (88). In that case, coffee is definitely halal because the process of coffee production doesn’t involve any fermentation step that can produce alcohol.

While coffee is rich in caffeine and is considered intoxicant, this beverage doesn’t result in drunkenness, drowsiness, or any other inebriating effects, as stated by a Fatwa by Imam Shihab al-Din.

Shaykh Farza A. Khan also mentioned that “intoxicant” in the Quran refers to substances like weed or wine that have inebriating effects. Dar al-Ifta Al Misriyyah’s Fatwa further supported the halal status of coffee and caffeine by addressing that small amounts of anything are prohibited if excessive intake causes drunkenness.

As a result, practically all Muslim scholars concur that coffee is halal. Such matters must always have a firm foundation and supporting scientific data.

Are Luwak Coffee Halal?

Facts About Asian Palm Civet
Luwak Coffee/ Asian Palm Civet

All coffees are practically halal to consume, even the well-known Luwak coffee. Luwak is the Indonesian word for civet, an animal from which Luwak coffee is obtained.

The droppings 

of the civet are properly cleansed and processed to produce quality coffee. Therefore, Luwak coffee is considered halal by Irsyad Al-Fatwa. Indonesian Ulema Council also issued the halal status of Luwak coffee. 

While the coffee comes from the civet’s anus, it’s considered safe and halal since coffee beans are correctly processed. So, is this coffee halal or haram? If you are still asking this question, there is no wrong with choosing brands with halal certification to clear your doubts.

Related Article: Do You Know? Fun Facts About Asian Palm Civet for You!

Are All Coffees Halal?

In general, all coffees are halal, yet there is one that cannot be considered halal, namely wine coffee. It is due to the product’s name, which contains the word “wine .”According to Dr. Ir. Muslich, M.Si., there are specific criteria regarding the halal certificates for food products in Indonesia.

One of the criteria is related to the product’s name. Coffee wine, for instance, is not considered halal because it has “wine” in it, and the name is considered haram. While the product doesn’t have any haram ingredients, they remain haram.

Fatwa About Coffee and Caffeine Considered Halal

Islamic Jurist
Islamic Jurist

Fatwas regarding the halal status of coffee and caffeine have been stated above. But there is one additional Fatwa by Imam Shihab al-Din which addressed that it is lawful to consume everything permissible, excluding what Allah has made to be forbidden.

So, coffee is lawful to drink since it’s free of anything that leads to drunkenness and doesn’t harm the body. In fact, this bitter beverage makes your body feels energized to tackle all your daily chores. Still, it’s important to note that all lawful things to be consumed can harm the body if consumed excessively.

Islamic Attitudes Toward Coffee and Caffeine Consumption

While coffee is now halal-friendly, it was once considered ‘sinful’ by Kha’ir Beg, a governor of Mecca, in 1511 CE. It was once again banned in Cairo and Constantinople during the reign of the Ottoman Empire. Seyhulislam Ebussuud, the Ottoman’s official religious scholar, issued a fatwa against the consumption of coffee. 

During those eras, governors and purist Muslims deemed coffee a stimulant with the same harmful effects as alcoholic beverages. Due to the increase in people gathering in coffee shops, thoughts considered radical by those rulers were on the rise. 

There was a possibility of riot since people might have plans to overthrow the ruler; thus, the ban. They even issued death threats to anybody who disobeyed the order. All these were because the government was worried about their collapse.

It was not until 1524 the ban on coffee consumption was lifted. Mufti Mehmet Ebussuud el-Imadi, the grand scholar of Sulat Selim I’s reign in the Ottoman Empire, issued a fatwa declaring coffee acceptable. To this day, coffee remains halal and is consumed by all Muslims worldwide.

Conclusion

So, is coffee halal or haram? As already elaborated above, coffee is considered halal because it has no ingredients that can lead to drunkenness or inebriating effects. Also, all coffees are practically halal, including the well-known Luwak coffee, which comes from civet droppings. However, wine coffee cannot be considered halal because of the word “wine” in its name.