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Last Updated: Friday, 22 February 2008, 19:51 GMT
Walkers crisps in labelling row
Walkers crisp packet
Walkers says anyone who is worried can contact the firm
A Muslim group has called for clearer labelling by Walkers crisps as it said traces of alcohol can be found in some of its products.

Alcohol is used in small quantities as an agent to extract the flavour from an ingredient.

The Food Standards Agency said that as the amount of alcohol was so miniscule it did not legally have to be listed.

Leicester-based Walkers said ethyl alcohol may be present in trace amounts in a very small number of flavours.

Massod Khawaja from the Halal Food Authority said alcohol must be included on the packet, so Muslims knew what they were eating.

The group has asked for a meeting with the firm to get labelling changed.

A spokeswoman from Walkers crisps said: "We do not add alcohol to our products. However, ethyl alcohol may be present in trace amounts in a very small number of our flavours.

"It is used as a carrying agent for flavourings, and is found in many common food and drink products. Foods like bread can also contain the same or higher trace amounts due to fermentation.

"In previous assessments by Muslim scholars, foods and drinks that contain trace amounts of ethyl alcohol have been confirmed as permissible for Muslim consumption because of both the fact that the ingredient does not bear its original qualities and does not change the taste, colour or smell of the product, and its very low level."

Walkers said they checked before using ethyl alcohol

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