We are developing The Food Labeller so that people running small food businesses and caterers can meet the demands of regulations in December 2014.
The ingredients in our database have to be screened to show the allergens: cereals containing gluten, crustaceans, molluscs, eggs, fish, peanuts, nuts, soybeans, milk, celery, mustard, sesame, lupin and sulphur dioxide at levels above 10mg/kg, or 10 mg/litre, expressed as SO2.
This will help food businesses to know what allergens are in the food products they make.
BUT – the ingredients in our food are challenging – so here are some of the issues I am facing:
Elmlea light cream alternative – ingredients Buttermilk (88.5%), Vegetable Fat (7.5%), Vegetable Oil (1.5%), Lactose, Stabilisers: E412, E410, E407, Emulsifier: E475, Colour: E160a. – but what is the oil made from – Unilever must know
Spreadable cheese has lots of other ingredients which a food label will need: Cheddar Cheese (53%), Water, Butter, Skimmed Milk Powder, Emulsifying Salts (E339, E452), Preservatives (Potassium Sorbate, Nisin), Colour (Beta Carotene).
Are coconuts to be labelled ‘Nuts’ for allergens? Yes
Is a squid and cuttlefish a mollusc – yes says Wikipedia – there are 85000 species of mollusc – including squid, octopus, (cephalopods) Gastropods – whelks,snails, Bivalves – shellfish,clams, oysters, scallops, mussels
Brown bread – who would have thought it contained soya as well as wheat gluten!