The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has published an update on the ongoing shortage of sunflower oil caused by the conflict in Ukraine. They previously advised that fully refined rapeseed oil may be used by manufacturers to replace sunflower oil without updating ingredients labels in order to ensure food supplies are not interrupted.
In this latest update, the FSA have advised that fully refined palm oil, fully refined coconut oil and fully refined soybean oil may also be used in some products without changes to the label being made.
Businesses have been asked to inform consumers using posters and website information if they have made a substitution and not been able to update the labels in time.
The process of fully refining oils to remove compounds and contaminants, also removes allergenic proteins (the cause of allergic reactions).
In a full risk assessment, the FSA has assessed the risk to allergic consumers to be very low to negligible.
Accurate food labelling is of the utmost importance to food allergic consumers, and we will continue to monitor the situation extremely closely to keep our supporters informed of any changes or updates.
For more information, please read our Vegetable oils factsheet or call our helpline on 01252 542029.