In light of the recent horse meat scandal, whereby various processed meat products from multiple companies have been found to contain up to 100% horse meat instead of the advertised beef mince, we were contacted by a number of our members. They expressed their concern as to whether they can actually trust what is in the food they eat and whether they may, unbeknown to them, be exposed to their problem allergen.
The Anaphylaxis Campaign went in search of clarification on this issue and contacted the Food Standards Agency (FSA) as part of this. They made this comment:
‘There is a legal obligation for food business operators to ensure that information provided on the label is accurate. This includes information on the 14 allergenic ingredients and the suitability of a product for someone with a particular allergy. The FSA works closely with local authorities to identify potential issues with food allergy labelling, taking action where necessary and alerting consumers to the problems. If you have a concern about the allergy labelling on a product you are advised to contact your Local Authority.’
With this in mind, the official advice from both the Anaphylaxis Campaign and FSA is that if you have a reaction to something where you should not have reacted, then if possible please keep a sample of the food consumed in the freezer and contact your local authority to have it tested. The same is true if you have requested a meal to be specifically free of an allergen and experience an allergic reaction. Your local authority should investigate the incident for you and are contactable here: http://food.gov.uk/enforcement/yourarea/#.UR0O6B3FKgQ
The FSA also made these further comments:
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