South African National Halaal Authority (SANHA)
January 2014 : Rabiul Awwal 1435

It is hard to resist the waves of aroma that emanate from freshly baked bread, buns and golden pastry as is the pervasive, addictive smell of skewered seekh kebab, roast chicken, boti, tikka meals, lamb chops, steaks and rotisseries. Without doubt this is the quintessential element that enhances the appearance of the products and increases the desirability to consume it.

These foods are generally prepared using the process of basting which involves meats cooking in either its own juices or some type of preparation such as a sauce or marinade. The meat is left to cook, then periodically coated with the liquid. In the case of baking it is used to spread milk and syrup on loaves, buns, pies and other pastry cakes to make the finish shiny and brown once out of the oven.

 In all probability the basting brush used is one containing pork bristle, the hair of the pig, since this is the most widely available raw material in the world for this application.

Whilst we as mere mortals allow ourselves to be misled by our own vagaries, following Divine Injunction is sufficient basis for our guidance and salvation. These injunctions are very clear and unambiguous. The Bible proclaims pork as, "Forbidden and unclean" in (Leviticus 11:7-8, Deuteronomy 14:8), "inhabited by the devil" (Matthew 8:24-34),  and it’s "repugnance and impurity" was entrenched in the Final Revelation, the Noble Quraan (Surah 5:v4, Surah 6:v145, Surah 15:v115.)

Whether dead, alive or slaughtered, all the parts of a pig, i.e. flesh, bone, skin, fat, nail, hair etc. are unholy and impure. The use of these items is prohibited. This includes deriving any benefit for personal or commercial gain.  In other words a Muslim cannot deal in these Haraam products even if it were for sale to non-Muslims.  The rule of "what you can’t consume - you can’t sell" holds true.

Most natural brushes on the market today are of pork bristle. The label on these brushes generally state "pure bristle" without specifying the type or origin. You wouldn’t touch a pig, so why let your food be touched by pig hair? 


  1. With advances in manufacturing technology, a variety of synthetic and silicone pastry and basting brushes are available in the market that are replacements for the pork bristle brush. 
  2. An alternative method that is starting to gain ground is spraying by use of inexpensive plastic sprayers.
  3. Take advantage of the free assessment programme at our offices.


In a unique step, SANHA is taking the initiative to encourage the removal of Haraam pig bristle basting brushes from homes, Halaal bakeries, street vendors and restaurants. SANHA certified outlets use synthetic brushes only. This is verified by our inspectors during their regular monthly audits.

We welcome all to call at our office at the appointed times (see conditions) to have your basting brushes assessed free of charge. We can sell you a brush if you are unable to obtain the correct one.

Don’t let your brush bristle with Haraam.


1. For businesses, we shall assess and only replace your first Haraam brush absolutely FREE OF CHARGE. Proof of registration of business is required.

2. Assessment and replacement will be done strictly at the stipulated times at any of our offices in Durban, Johannesburg and Cape Town.

3. Monday - Thursday only. Time: 10am to 12 noon.

4. While stocks last.

5. SANHA reserves the right not to enter into any transaction.


Your Duas, constructive comments, criticism and feedback is truly appreciated
  facebook   twitter
View in printable pdf View in pdf