What are allergens
Allergens are substances present in food that, in sensitive or intolerant people, can cause allergic reactions of various kinds, and even death. These foods are harmless to most consumers.
Allergic reactions can occur due to the presence of very small amounts of the ingredient to which the allergic person is sensitive.
Therefore, food allergies and intolerances are recognized as a problem of food security that must be managed properly, and in which food industries play a key role:
The European Union has developed a list of 14 allergens that must be identified when used as ingredients in a dish or food. These allergens are:
In addition to the 14 allergens on the official list, there are customers and countries that include others to consider as "customer requirement" among which are, for example, carrots, peaches, strawberries, aubergines, etc.
These requirements also apply to establishments that sell bulk foods, such as supermarkets, restaurants, establishments that sell take-out, etc.
According to Regulation (EU) No. 1169/2011 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2011 on food information provided to the consumer (OJ L 304 of 22.11.2011), food labels must indicate in a highlighting the allergens they contain, for example in bold, or capital letters or with another type of letter.
Qualyment Innovación S.L. has extensive experience in the development of protocols to prevent cross-contamination by allergens.