The Sesame Affect

The world is becoming more susceptible to allergies and the newest food to hit the allergy list is sesame. In the United States, it is estimated 300,000 to 500,000 people are allergic to this multi-purpose seed. What has been done to protect those vulnerable to this food?

Since America’s Food Labelling Modernisation Act made this year, sesame is now placed on the list of major food allergens. This means, three years from now, sesame must be disclosed on food labels. Furthermore, stores will also have to place a major food allergen list adjacent to non-packaged foods being offered for sale at retail outlets – and sesame will be one of them.

The top 8 allergens currently are milk, eggs, fish, crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat and soybean but sesame is known to many as the ‘ninth major allergen’.

For those that are allergic to sesame, things can become a little tricky. Why? Because those allergic to it may not know the other names for sesame that can be used in the list of ingredients. Most of the time, sesame can be hidden within such vague labelling terms as “natural seasonings” or “spices.”

Do you need to ‘get to know’ your allergen better – understand the various terms used or where it can secretly hide? What steps can you take to protect you and your family from the various allergens they might have?

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