With an increasingly high number of food allergies and intolerances being reported, demand for ‘free-from’ foods has soared over the last five years. Free-from foods pose unique problems to manufacturers, who not only have to address the effects that removal of core ingredients such as eggs, wheat or dairy products have on the manufacturing process, but also have to consider both the taste and nutritional value of the finished product .
Fortunately manufacturers are not alone in their quest, as suppliers are now offering a wide range of allergen-free ingredients, helping food and beverage manufacturers to create a wider variety of allergen-free products than ever before. In a recent special edition, FoodNavigator examined innovations in ingredients and technologies and lifted the veil on one of the biggest food safety markets of the future: allergen awareness.
Click on the links below to access the full articles:
‘Could this be the next peanut?’: Assessing novel allergen potential
Reflecting allergen risk with food labelling: ‘Free from’ and ‘may contain’
Lowering allergenic potential: Can new technologies help to reduce allergens?
Consumers equate ‘free-from’ with health: EUFIC
Following a plan recently proposed by the government, a unique and unified food labelling system will see the light of the day around summer 2013. The idea behind the new system is to offer consumers the opportunity to easily compare food labels from one supermarket to another and from one product to another with the minimum of fuss.
The proposed labelling is very simple and will comprise of colours codes (green, orange and red) and labels (low, medium and high) to indicate level of sugar, fat, salt, etc. The scheme is voluntary, but public health minister Anna Soubry says that “by having a consistent system we will all be able to see at a glance what is in our food. This will help us all choose healthier options and control our calorie intake”.
After the food hygiene rating system, will this new food labelling system lead to a supermarket food and drink hygiene rating?
Liquid nitrogen: a liquid that boils at -196 C and fascinates scientists and food professionals alike. But would you drink it? In a recent post on their official website, the FSA outlines the dangers of a product made ubiquitous by the likes of Heston Blumenthal in recent years…
The extremely cold temperature it reaches present a major risk to the human body if drunk or eaten, as teenager Gaby Scanlan recently experienced in Lancaster. The 18 year old girl drank two cocktails, both containing liquid nitrogen and suffered severe internal burns, forcing doctors to remove her entire stomach as a result of the damage caused.
This incident has led David Morris (Conservative MP for Morecambe and Lunesdale) to request parliament to ban the serving of all chemicals in drinks.
Scientists have also raised concerns, as liquid nitrogen is normally restricted to a medical or scientific environment but has recently become a more popular tool in the preparation of both food and drink.
The bar that served both drinks to Scanlan has been undergoing a police and council investigation since the incident.
At 3 o’clock today, the scientific journal Food and Chemical Toxicology is publishing the results of a study led by molecular biology professor Gilles-Eric Séralini. It is a bombshell of its own, with a scientific but also political impact.
For more than two years, a group of scientists secretly studied 200 rats fed with genetically modified maize, and the results of their study are quite intriguing!
Huge food safety risk for the consumer?
Those results are qualifying GMOs as “poison” according to the French scientist. Indeed after 12 months of experience, rats fed with GMOs – even at the lowest dose – were developing two to three times more tumours than normal rats. After 24 months (which is the equivalent of a lifetime for a rat) 50% to 80% of rats had developed a cancer, compared to 30% for the normal rats. Cancer is developed at a much younger age as well for rats fed with GMOs.
Interestingly this study was financed by French supermarket CEOs, who are willing to avoid a new Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE, or commonly known as mad cow disease) scandal.
Please find more details from our sister website TheGrocer: Monsanto Roundup weedkiller and GM maize implicated in ‘shocking’ new cancer study