Sunday, September 26, 2010

Cross Contamination Warnings are Voluntary

I was at a birthday party today, and we were discussing food allergies and school.
Now that Ohio has passed House Bill 1, our school district has a new rule: all treats that are sent into classrooms have to be individually wrapped, with nutrition and ingredients listed on the package. I happened to mention that this was a Catch-22, because now foods being sent in will be from a bakery, where there is a higher chance of cross-contamination. Someone else said 'yeah, but that would be listed on the label'. Well, that's where it gets tricky.
Did you know that cross contamination warnings are voluntary? Even if a company makes cupcakes on shared equipment with cookies that contain nuts (or other allergens), they are not required to state this on their packaging.
So how can you tell if a product is safe for your child with food allergies? Please read Is Your Food Really Allergy Safe? from the Kids with Food Allergies website. And when in doubt, call the manufacturer!

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