Do you know that for the fourth quarter of 2011 allergens exceeded microbiological causes for recalls? If you Google “FDA Allergen Recalls” you might be amazed at all the recalls by the FDA just within the last few months. They ranged from undeclared milk and soy in jams and jellies to sea salt that possibly contained milk residue – the list goes on and on. It is important for food plants to ensure that each and every time they go from one production run to another that the food contact surfaces are allergen-free.
Food production facilities must ensure that their ingredient suppliers are also declaring specific allergens in their products and testing for them. Certificates of analysis for each lot must identify any allergens and provide results which are within acceptable ranges. Testing should also be done by the buyer to verify that ingredients meet specifications for allergens. When using ingredients with allergens the processor must also verify that cross-contamination is not occurring when manufacturing allergen-free products.
Nelson-Jameson offers test kits for major allergens that permit these verification measures. They provide assurance that finished product does not contain those allergens when not stated on labels. Click here for more information on our allergen test kits.
We are nearing the end of 2012 and it is each food company’s responsibility to ensure that what happened at the end of 2011 (recalls were up 50 percent last quarter of 2011 compared to the previous quarter) never occurs again!