Food Label Awareness: Sulphite Allergy
When a family member has an allergy to sulphites or any food, reading is protection.
Reading labels is a way of life when you or a member of your family has an allergy to sulphites, the food additive. Before eating anything in a package, be sure to read the label carefully. Look for hidden sources of sulphites and alternate names for it.
If you are ever uncertain about whether a food product is safe for you, call the manufacturer to confirm. When in doubt, don’t eat it.
In Canada, new regulations have been proposed that would require food manufacturers disclose if sulphites are present in a product at a level of 10 parts per million or higher.
More on Canada’s New Food Allergen Regulations.
In the United States, the Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act went into effect in 2006. FALCPA requires manufacturers to use plain language when listing priority allergens, and to declare all allergens either in the ingredient list, or in a “Contains:” statement at the end of the list.
The new regulations also apply to food allergies, and require that allergens are declared in plain language, and are disclosed when they are components of other ingredients (i.e. mustard as a component of “spices.”
More on Canada’s Food Allergen Regulations
In the United States, the Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act, which went into effect in 2006, requires manufacturers to use plain language when listing priority allergens, and to declare all allergens either in the ingredient list, or in a “Contains:” statement at the end of the list.
The allergens included in this regulation are milk, eggs, fish, shellfish, tree nuts, wheat peanuts and soybeans. These regulations do not include sesame and mustard, unlike the proposed Canadian regulations.
Separate legislation requires companies to declare sulphites if they are present at more than 10 parts per million, or if they had a technical or functional effect in the food.