Socio-Economic Issues Associated with Food Allergy
Food allergies affect a substantial proportion of the population, with prevalence estimates ranging from 1% to 11% of the population suffering from some complaints. Dietary exclusion of allergenic foods, ingredients and derived products, if necessary, represents the primary risk management strategy at the present time. Given the potentially profound consequences of experiencing an allergic reaction, food allergy has the potential to negatively affect the socio-economic functioning of those food allergic patients, as well as their families. The results of research focused on the socio-economic impact of food allergy suggest that, whilst food allergy has the potential to have a profound impact on the well-being of consumers, not all food allergy management activities are equally preferred by food allergy sufferers. The introduction of novel hypoallergenic products produced using potentially controversial food technologies is not universally accepted by food allergic consumers. There is considerable consumer demand for accurate allergen labeling of food products. Questions arise as to whether current regulatory frameworks (for example, the General Food Law in Europe) are adequate in terms of optimizing consumer protection. Potential future areas of research will be discussed, in particular those where international collaboration is needed to attain the research objectives.
KeywordsFood Allergy Food Allergic Patient
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- Buttriss, J. (2002). Adverse reactions to food: The report of a British nutrition foundation task force. Oxford, United Kingdom: Blackwell Science Ltd.Google Scholar
- EU, 2002. Regulation (EC) No. 178/2002 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 28 January 2002 laying down the general principles and requirements of food law, establishing the European Food Safety Authority and laying down procedures in matters of food safety. Official Journal of the European Communities, L31(45), 1–24.Google Scholar
- Frewer, L.J., Howard, C., Shepherd, R. (1997). Public concerns about general and specific applications of genetic engineering: Risk, benefit and ethics. Science, Technology and Human Values, 22(1), 98–124. Hefle, S.L., Taylor, S.L. 2004. Food allergy and the food industry. Curr Allergy Asthma Reports, 4(1), 55–59.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Hendriks, M.J., Frewer, L.J., van der Meulen, B.M.J. (2011). Allergens in law; European legislation assessed against the preferences of food allergic consumers. European Food and Feed Law Review, 2, 74–87.Google Scholar