Allergens - what they are and why they are controlled

Every consumer has the right to be informed about the food he buys. His choices may be influenced by, among others, health, economic, environmental, social and ethical considerations.

What are allergens?

Food must be correctly labelled on packaging.

Allergens are factors that cause a reaction of the immune system and the emergence of an allergic reaction or food intolerance. They stimulate the body to produce specific IgE antibodies or cells that react specifically to a given allergen. IgE antibodies are specific to a given allergen, they are found only in allergic people and therefore, using skin tests, it is possible to detect allergy to a given allergen.

 

Symptoms of food allergy

A food allergy is an adverse reaction to food that has an immune mechanism. Food ailments, atopic dermatitis, allergic rhinitis and conjunctivitis, but also an attack of bronchial asthma or even life-threatening anaphylactic shock - these are symptoms resulting from food allergies. The lack of correct information on allergens contained in food products can have serious consequences, so it is important to know about their presence in food.

Allergenic substances and the incidence of food allergies

The frequency of consumption of a product in a given geographical region and the age of the person consuming the product determine the presence of food allergies. Babies and children are more likely to suffer from this problem. However, it does not mean, it does not apply to adults. As reported by The International Food Safety Authorities Network (INFOSAN), the incidence of food allergies is estimated at approximately 1-3% in adults and 4-6% in children. More than 70 different foods have been reported to cause allergies. The foods that trigger the most severe reactions and most cases of food allergies include grains that contain gluten, eggs, peanuts, soy and milk.

How to avoid the risk?

The only way to avoid allergy symptoms for people who are allergic is to avoid eating foods that contain a product that causes an allergic reaction. Public awareness of the presence of allergens in food is the first step to eliminate the risk, therefore it is recommended to declare these foods and their ingredients on the labeling of food products placed on the market.

Our contribution to food safety

Food safety and high quality is one of the goals our company helps to achieve. WESSLING Polska sp. z o.o. performs allergen tests in accordance with the guidelines contained in the Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2011 on the provision of food information to consumers. We offer accredited food tests for gluten, sulphite (sulfur dioxide), milk proteins, eggs, hazelnuts, walnuts, cashews, peanuts and almonds, soybean, lupine, sesame and mustard, as well as verification of food labels, i.e. assessment of their labeling in terms of the requirements of the above regulation. We encourage you to contact us and get acquainted with the details of our offer.

Do you want to know more?

Contact us.