About our food allergen consultancy

Our food allergen advisors and trainers provide these services to help companies comply with food allergen laws and reduce the risk of  food allergen incidents:

What laws relate to food allergens?

The Food Information to Consumers (FIC) Regulation requires that certain food allergens be specifically highlighted in the ingredients list on a food label of packaged foods. There is currently an exemption if the food is packed on the same site as it is sold. From October 2021, ‘Natasha’s Law’ will come into force meaning that these PPDS (pre-packed for direct sale) foods will also require labelling and will need a full ingredient list with allergens highlighted.

Food allergens also need to be declared for loose foods so caterers and retailers need to have accurate allergen information available for each food product and menu item. Although this information can be given verbally, it must be verifiable and so must be documented or held electronically for employees, customers and environmental health and trading standards officers to check.

Food hygiene regulations require food business operators to control hazards in their operations. Cross-contact from food allergens in dishes that should not contain these ingredients is one such hazard which needs to be controlled.

What are the 14 listed food allergens?

EU legislation has identified the 14 most common food allergens in Europe and requires that they and their derivatives are highlighted on food labels . It is important that manufacturers apply allergen risk assessment and controls to these ingredients throughout the production process.

The allergens are:

  • Cereals containing gluten (e.g. wheat, barley, oats, rye, spelt, kamut)
  • Sesame
  • Soya
  • Milk
  • Eggs
  • Tree nuts (e.g. cashews, almonds, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts)
  • Peanuts
  • Fish
  • Crustaceans (e.g. crab, lobster, shrimp, scampi)
  • Molluscs (e.g. oysters, mussels, clams)
  • Celery
  • Mustard
  • Lupin
  • Sulphur dioxide

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