The Food Safety Authority of Ireland has developed a new online and mobile-compatible tool to help Ireland’s 22,000 food service businesses identify and manage allergens in their offerings.
The tool is part of the FSAI MenuCal calorie calculator and was launched today (Monday, November 9th) by Minister for Health Leo Varadkar to assist food businesses in complying with their legal requirements to display allergen information.
The requirement to display allergen information applies to all food businesses, from restaurants to supermarkets. The written information must be easily located and accessible to the consumer, and clearly identify the allergen associated with the food item.
The 14 categories of allergens covered in the rules include gluten, peanuts, tree nuts, milk, celery, eggs, fish and shellfish.
Minister Varadkar commented, “This new MenuCal facility is a really useful online tool that reminds businesses about allergens when they’re calculating the calorie content of their menus.
“Well done to the FSAI for designing MenuCal and I’m delighted that other countries are now looking to adopt it. I hope it makes life easier and safer for both customers and food providers,” he added.
Chief Executive of the FSAI, Dr Pamela Byrne says the allergen tools is an important extra resource for chefs and managers in helping to comply with their legal obligation to inform consumers of allergens in food.
“Most people take for granted that they can enjoy food without undue risk,” she said.
“However, a significant number of people need to be ever-cautious and avoid certain food allergens, which can cause severe and possibly life-threatening reactions.”
“Clear and accurate labelling of allergens is, therefore, essential as even trace amounts can have serious consequences for those affected,” said Byrne.
© 2015 - Checkout Magazine by Jenny Whelan.