Seafood comes from edible sea plants as well as aquatic animals which live only in water for most or all of their lives.
The term seafood also applies to any freshwater life eaten by humans; therefore, all edible aquatic life can be referred to as seafood.
All types of sea plants as well as aquatic animals are permissible to be used for food, whether they are caught or found dead, unless they are hazardous to life or health. As the Qur’an states, “Anything you catch in the sea is lawful for you, and so is all food from it.” (Soorat Al-Maa’idah, 5:96)
The phrase ‘anything you catch’ in the above verse refers to aquatic animals that are caught alive, while the word ‘food’ refers to dead aquatic animals that are washed ashore.
For land animals to be lawful, two conditions must be met:
- They must be considered lawful for their flesh to be used for food.
- They must be hunted or slaughtered according to Islamic law (Sharee‛ah).