Herbicide in bread and all flour products


I have a concern in relation to an article authored by Sheree Bega appeared in the Mail & Guardian on the 8th September 2021, alerting of the use of the herbicide viz., glyphosate used in bread and flour products; I am concerned regarding its potential to cause cancer in humans.

After carefully reviewing the article, we consulted scientific journals and medical experts and thereafter concluded:

  1. Medical experts and scientific research reveal that glyphosate found in bread and flour is not harmful nor does it cause cancer. [https://www.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5515989/]
  2. There is not sufficient evidence to prove the above allegation. However, if scientific evidence is produced and supported by notable and leading food scientists as well medical experts that the above ingredient poses a threat to human health, Then, it will become prohibited for consumption. This is based on the supreme objective of the shariah, which is to preserve life, the Messenger ﷺ said:

“Don’t cause harm to yourself, nor towards others” [Ibn Majah, Sunan]

  1. Food is generally considered permissible, especially those manufactured with pure ingredients. Allah says:

“O’ mankind eat from that which is lawful and good on the earth” [Al-Baqarah, 168]

  1. Consumption hereof is regarded as permissible. This permissibility is premised upon the mere lack of demonstrable and definitive evidence that it results in harm.
  2. The legal maxim “certainty will not be lifted by doubt” illustrates that the permissibility of a product will not be lifted due to an allegation or doubt.
  3. Notwithstanding the above, reviewing of policy relating to pesticide and herbicide, especially glyphosate should be advised. As well as striving to find more sustainable and environmentally friendly products.
  4. Finally, anyone that may have a hesitation in using bread or flour and other products containing the herbicide should exercise his/her freedom of choice and abstain from it.

والله تعالى أعلم

And Allāh knows best



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