Cookie Consent by Free Privacy Policy Generator
09 May 2024
Food Allergy
PREVENT, - Food Safety,

As observer to the Codex Alimentarius Commission, EFA participated in another round of consultations for a guideline on the use of technology in food labelling. This process is reflecting on how ingredients are disclosed to patients electronically, something directly affecting people with food allergy.

EFA’s response reflects a set of key priorities directly from the EFA food allergy community. Faced with increasing cases where food labelling information, including general and allergen ingredients, are made available through digital means such as websites and platforms, EFA is vocal in a member in the Codex Committee for Food Labelling who is looking at technology.

The key premise for consumers with food allergy remains the same: technology is useful in complementing physical labels but cannot fully replace them, especially so when it comes to information related to safety and health, such as food allergens. EFA’s response to Codex includes the main recommendations herebelow.

Reliable, up to date information is a must on physical and digital labels

Food information on the physical label and on digital means should always coincide, and therefore due process shall be taken to ensure the update of the information in relevant cases e.g. recipe change.

Food allergens must appear next to the ingredient list in all cases

Mandatory food information must be presented either according to certain special provisions (e.g. italics, bold); or by providing a summary statement for food allergens directly next to the ingredient list. This should apply to they wa the information is displayed in digital environments.

Food labelling information should not get mixed up with commercial ads

When presented via digital means, food information related to health must be clearly identifiable and not mixed with commercial information. This differentiation should apply to both mandatory information, such as food allergens, as well as voluntary information, such as Precautionary Allergen Labelling (PAL).

Digital food labelling can and should become reliable for all

The use of digital technology for labelling purposes requires changes at a societal level: investing in public awareness, understanding the digital means, and fighting the rising distrust to technology (i.e. accuracy of updates, responsible for information).

EFA thanks our members of the Food Allergy patient community for their valuable contribution to this submission. 

You can find the full EFA response here.