The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) recently released a report summarising their third meeting on allergens requested by the Codex Alimentarius Commission. The focus of this meeting was precautionary allergen labeling (PAL) and its implications for consumer safety. The report outlines the current challenges associated with PAL and provides recommendations for its effective implementation.
The FAO/WHO report proposes using risk-based reference doses (RfDs) as a basis for PAL, which would be protective for the majority of food-allergic individuals. Under this system, individuals with a specific food allergy would be advised to avoid foods carrying PAL for that allergen. However, additional measures may be necessary to address hyper-allergic individuals who react to smaller amounts of allergens.
The report sheds light on the challenges associated with current PAL practices and offers recommendations for improvement and can be accessed here.
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