Improve allergen labelling on food packaging.
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A growing number of people in the UK have life threatening allergies, with 8% of children and 2% of adults having at least one food allergy (not counting those with intolerances), yet allergen labelling on food is unclear, and labelling for items that may contain allergens is optional.
Allergy sufferers and their carers have to carefully examine every label, checking the ingredients list for items in bold, which are sometimes difficult to spot,and for 'may contain' statements. The absence of any statement often means that you can't buy the item as you can't be sure it is safe.
There are 14 major allergens that must be labelled by law. We would like legislation to require manufacturers label foods clearly on the front of packaging, with an icon to show the type of allergen, as per http://www.erudus.com/standardised-food-allergy-icons/
The back of the packaging should have a separate box listing all allergens. May contain statements should be mandatory where there is a genuine risk of cross contamination.
Online retailers should ensure that icons are visible in the product image and include the icons and may contain statements in the product description.
These simple changes to food labelling would make the lives of approximately 2 million people in the UK easier and safer.
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