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Old 04-15-2011, 12:33 PM   #1
Gunslinger711
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Default Halal Kombucha

My boss and I are looking brewing up some root beer and kombucha as a fun side project at work. He's muslim so he's worried about the alcohol content.

Posted this thread for Root Beer: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f95/halal-root-beer-231045/

Now I'm looking for specifics on alcohol content in Kombucha. I've hit up google, hit up Wikipedia. Some sites say all of the alcohol gets converted to vinegar, other sites say the content can be from 0.5 to 3% alcohol depending on how long you ferment it.

Now I'm looking for the real info from the experts on here, and maybe somebody who's in the same situation. Ideally I'm looking for a way to make Kombucha with no alcohol whatsoever.

Thanks,

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Old 04-15-2011, 01:58 PM   #2
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idk dude, even odouls and other non alcoholic beer has at least some alcohol in it. you're going to have to force carbonate, just like the first person to respond to your root beer thread said.

yeast pisses alcohol and farts co2 while eating sugar. if you're expecting to make co2 naturally, expect to make alcohol naturally. if you carbonate artificially (keg), you don't risk converting sugars to alcohol.

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Old 04-15-2011, 02:30 PM   #3
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That doesn't really apply to kombucha though, part of the organism itself is yeast.

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Old 04-15-2011, 02:44 PM   #4
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If you let the Kombucha go long enough, the acetobacter will convert all of the alcohol into vinegar. On the flip side, I think to consume all the alcohol, the vinegar content might be high enough to make the Kombucha very tart and, well, vinegar-y.

But, I don't know your taste buds like you do. Long and short, it can be done, but you quite possibly won't like it when it is.

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Old 04-15-2011, 02:46 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunslinger711 View Post
Now I'm looking for specifics on alcohol content in Kombucha. Ideally I'm looking for a way to make Kombucha with no alcohol whatsoever.

Thanks,

That's really hard to guess at. It's the nature of a scoby to have varying levels of bacteria and yeasts. Yours may be a stronger alcohol producer that another, and that can change from week to week. I think that the only way you could be sure that all the alcohol was gone was to boil it out, but that would probably destroy some of the healthy stuff in there.
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Old 04-15-2011, 02:59 PM   #6
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By LAW it must be less than 2% to be marketed and considered non-alchoholic.

However, most are labelled as 0.5% ABW which in reality means 1 to 1.5% ABV.

"O ye who believe! Strong drink and games of chance and idols and divining arrows are only an infamy of Satan's handiwork. Leave it aside in order that ye may succeed." (Al Ma'idah 90). "

"They question thee about strong drink and games of chance. Say: In both is great harm and utility for men; but the harm of them is greater than their usefulness." (Al-Baqarah 219)."

"Shaitân (Satan) wants only to excite enmity and hatred between you with intoxicants (alcoholic drinks) and gambling, and hinder you from the remembrance of Allâh and from As-Salât (the prayer). So, will you not then abstain?" Quran 5:91

"They ask you (O Muhammad) concerning intoxicants and gambling. Say: "In them is a great sin, and (some) benefit for men, but the sin of them is greater than their benefit." And they ask you what they ought to spend. Say: "That which is beyond your needs." Thus Allâh makes clear to you His Laws in order that you may give thought." Quran 2:219

The Farsi word used is al-khamr or "intoxicants" literally translated as "to ferment". But is openly enforced as meaning anything containing alcohol. Yes, even medications.

The problem here is that the Quran doesn't straight out banish you to hell for drinking alcohol as much as it does for being flatout drunk but Muslims in general have a habit of assumption in that if a little is good then more (in this case a flat out ban) is better.

The funny thing about this is that the actual word used in Quran is "Intoxicants" which would encompass even Tobacco. And some of the best Tobacco's in the world are cultivated in Muslim Nations.

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Old 04-17-2011, 11:41 AM   #7
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The problem here is that the Quran doesn't straight out banish you to hell for drinking alcohol as much as it does for being flatout drunk but Muslims in general have a habit of assumption in that if a little is good then more (in this case a flat out ban) is better.
Really?!?! Must we generalize and analyze people's cultures. The question was about kombucha.


So what it really comes down to is how much alcohol this person minded consuming. Unless something goes seriously wrong, this drink will not get anyone the slightest bit tipsy. But if this person feels it's necessary to avoid the consumption of the slightest amount, then he should not drink kombucha.
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Old 04-18-2011, 02:43 PM   #8
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Really?!?! Must we generalize and analyze people's cultures. The question was about kombucha.
Really. The question was about Kombucha but also in the context of a particular peoples culture. How about you stick to the generalizations and leave me to state the facts about what I know. And that being that a traditionalist Muslim will not consume alcohol no matter the content. But, a more modern believer will actually read the text for what it says.
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Old 09-04-2013, 05:06 PM   #9
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Kombucha is a ferment, and all ferments create alcohol. There are ways to reduce the alcohol content, but in my experience, it's very, very difficult to make an under-alcohol kombucha (<.5% ABV). The best way to do it is actually quite simple: pasteurize. Make your kombucha as per normal and then heat it up for an extended period of time. The alcohol will burn off, the yeast and most of the bacteria will die, and you'll not have bubbly booch unless you force carb, but you'll still have all the beneficial acids and none of the alcohol.

There is a method by which you add laboratory bacterial strains to consumer the remaining ethanol, but this is easiest.

It's often said that if you leave fresh squeezed juice on a countertop overnight it will generate about .5% alcohol - which is to say it's very difficult to avoid all alcohol.

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Old 09-12-2013, 12:32 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GilaMinumBeer View Post
By LAW it must be less than 2% to be marketed and considered non-alchoholic.

However, most are labelled as 0.5% ABW which in reality means 1 to 1.5% ABV.
Actually, in the US, if the kombucha hits 0.5% ACV or higher it must be produced on qualified premises subject to TTB regulation. Mfg must ensure that if that bottle is removed from refrigerator and starts to referment that it will not increase in alcohol content at/above 0.5%. This is why kombucha was pulled from shelves in 2010 and many were reformulated, many are insanely diluted and some are even pasteurized now. http://www.ttb.gov/faqs/kombucha-faqs.shtml

The bottom line is that kombucha contains alcohol. Acetobacter is not always found in kombucha, in fact I do not want it in my kombucha...but I want glucobacter. The best explanation of how kombucha does its thing, that I have ever found, is here http://happyherbalist.com/analysis_of_kombucha.htm
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