More needs to be done to reduce allergen contamination

By Nikkie Sutton

- Last updated on GMT

Awareness: known allergens include nuts, beans and grain
Awareness: known allergens include nuts, beans and grain
The hospitality and foodservice industry is calling for more to be done to mitigate allergen contamination in the supply chain in the face of a global ‘allergy epidemic’.

Insight from a new white paper, On High Alert: Allergens in the Foodservice and Hospitality Supply Chain​, released by management solutions provider Trade Interchange, found that eight in 10 hospitality businesses said their customers are requesting more information about allergens in the supply chain.

The research was conducted with 225 professionals who are directly responsible for managing food and drinks suppliers.

More transparent

Top 14 known food allergens:​

  1. Eggs
  2. Sesame
  3. Milk
  4. Tree nuts
  5. Peanuts
  6. Fish
  7. Crustaceans – a type of shellfish (eg, prawns)
  8. Soya
  9. Gluten containing grains
  10. Molluscs – a type of shellfish (eg, mussels)
  11. Lupin
  12. Mustard
  13. Celery
  14. Sulphites

Trade Interchange said that with clinical evidence suggesting the number of people with allergies is on the rise, the research confirms the sector is meeting the challenge head on, with the large majority (84%) already working to improve visibility in the supply chain.

Additionally, more than three quarters (79%) of those surveyed said supply chains in the food and hospitality industry should be more transparent.

The white paper also found the majority of operators were still using manual systems to document supplier information, leaving some struggling to manage allergen data.

Heightened awareness

To solve this, tools such as specialist software exist to ease the administrative burden and minimise human error.

Trade Interchange co-founder and managing director Mike Edmunds said: “With heightened awareness of risks around allergens, it is of paramount importance that businesses work towards enhanced supplier management to reduce the chance of contamination from allergens.

“It is with this in mind that we have developed an extension of our technology that will allow enhanced product information management to better monitor ingredients.”

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