Food allergens and the law

The Food Information to Consumers (FIC) Regulation requires that certain food allergens be specifically highlighted in the ingredients list on a food label. 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.

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.

 Food allergen information

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

About our food allergen services

We can work with caterers to gather the necessary food allergen information in a suitable format to help team members and customers with allergies. We can also carry out food allergen risk assessments should you wish to make an allergen-free claim.

We also run food allergen courses and offer food allergen e-learning


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