Spotlight Halal: Oreo™ Cookies
WHAT IS IT?
Oreos™ are brand of snack cookies produced by Nabisco. The classic Oreo is made of two rich, near black chocolate wafers separated by a white creamy filling. They are the best-selling cookie in the U.S. In fact, over 362 billion Oreos have been sold since the cookie was first introduced in 1912, making it the best selling cookie of the 20th century. For the first 85 years of their manufacture, Oreo™ Cookies were made with animal fat.
The rich chocolate flavor of Oreos is so popular that it is found in recipes for milkshakes, cheesecakes, ice cream sundaes, pie crusts, pudding, breakfast bars, cakes and all types of chocolaty sweets.
HOW IS IT MADE?
For the first 85 years of its manufacture, Oreos were made with animal fat. That started changing in the late 1980's and early 1990's when Nabisco began reformulating its recipe to use vegetable shortening.
In the year 1998, Oreo cookies in the U.S. became certified as not containing fat from pigs or other animals. Oreos are made with the artificial flavoring 'vanillin' and not with 'vanilla extract.' Vanilla extract contains alcohol (ethanol) which counters Islamic dietary requirements. Vegetable shortening and vanillin are used in all varieties of Oreo cookies.
Oreos contain: Sugar, Flour, Vegetable Oil, Cocoa Powder, Corn Syrup, Baking Soda, Cornstarch, Salt, Soy Lecithin, Vanillin and Chocolate.WARNING LEVEL: NONE
This issue of "Spotlight Halal" was written upon the request of a reader who asked us to research Oreo cookies -- and for good reason.
UPDATE APR-07-2009 click here for further clarification as to why oreo cookies are halal...Click here