Food allergen labeling is important and Eating Edible knows it. You also need to know the answers to the questions: What is an allergen? and What are food allergens?
Eating Edible makes sure our care packages for kids with food allergies are clearly labeled so that everyone knows everything in our care packages. They are for kids with allergies — especially students and campers who want delicious food-allergy-free desserts that fit special dietary needs! We offer gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free and wheat-free care packages all rolled up into one amazing care package for kids withe food allergies. It is really important that you can trust that our care packages are safe for your kids with allergies, whether it is your college student and your child at summer camp.
What is an allergen?
An allergen is any normally harmless substance that causes a reaction in an allergic person. The immune system of a person with allergies responds to an allergen in much the same way the immune system normally responds to a germ, or antigen.
What are food allergens?
Food allergens are typically naturally-occurring proteins in foods or derivatives of them that cause abnormal immune responses. Prevalence of food allergies around the world is believed to be increasing.
The Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act (FALCPA) requires that manufacturers of all foods regulated by the U.S. FDA labeled on or after January 1, 2006 must disclose on the label whether the product contains any of the eight major allergens: dairy, eggs, fish, shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, and soy.
This does not require that all foods are labeled and it does not cover cosmetics and personal care products, prescription and over‐the‐counter medications or supplements, pet food, toys and crafts. This is important to know for your kids with food allergies!
And gluten is not recognized as a common allergen, and therefore is not required to be disclosed. The FDA does permit voluntary use of gluten free claims on food. This act requires that the identification of the eight allergens be written in clear English on food items. For more information, also visit: www.fda.gov
Despite the Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act (FALCPA), current U.S. food labeling regulations allow items to be labeled as “nondairy” on the package even if they contain casein. The labeling regulations do require that the ingredient statement on nondairy products indicate the presence of casein or caseinates in the actual ingredient statement on the package. The regulation states: “When foods characterized on the label as ‘nondairy’ contain a caseinate ingredient, the caseinate ingredient shall be followed by a parenthetical statement identifying its source. For example, if the manufacturer uses the term ‘nondairy’ on a creamer that contains sodium caseinate, it shall include a parenthetical term such as ‘a milk derivative’ after the listing of sodium caseinate in the ingredient list.”
Therefore, if a product is labeled “nondairy” on the front of the package, read the label carefully. Do not assume that it is milk free! Always check the ingredient statement to look for any milk-derived ingredients.