Food allergy facts and more

Food allergies are a scary thing when you think about how many ways a person could be affected, and the possible severity of the reactions, but what’s been worrying me lately is the whole labeling issue involved with allergens.

Recently we’ve been looking into some packaging improvements, including what the FDA requires as far as ingredient listings, etc. There are some pretty strict rules, as there should be, because let’s face it – shouldn’t the consumer know what they’re getting?

Well, in a perfect world, all of the ingredients would be listed clearly in every product, every time. Unfortunately, especially for those with food allergies, sometimes allergy-inducing ingredients get into foods that were previously safe. Whether it’s traces of that ingredient that somehow made it into a batch, or an ingredient that has changed and wasn’t listed, what may seem like a small error can cause huge health problems.

Most recently, my friend Heather alerted me to the fact that Silk soy milk may contain almonds. Um…yea. That soy milk that you thought was safe to buy for your family member with nut allergies – well – isn’t. (By the way, those of you out there with nut allergies, we don’t use Silk.)

While I don’t personally have allergies, nor does anyone in my family who I might share food with, I care very deeply about doing all I can to keep our products safe. One family in particular has inspired me to take on food allergies as a cause of sorts, and they’ve shared not only their experiences, but a whole lot of information that I have learned so much from.

One site that I started clicking through the other day is http://www.kidswithfoodallergies.org. Frustrated about the Silk nonsense, I read the list of recalls first, which may have been a bad decision because it only served to make me more upset. There is a recall almost every day!!! Do you know how many products are out there with misleading allergen warnings?! Aaahhh!!

Anyway, after I freaked out a little, I felt so frustrated. Being frustrated does no good though, so I’m going to try really hard to do what I can, and to make more people a little more aware about these issues. While I can’t promise it (let’s face it, my schedule gets crazy sometimes), I’m going to make an effort to write monthly and hopefully more about some food allergy issues. I know not everyone is interested in learning more about them, but I really hope that some of you will at least consider reading because it may not sound like the most exciting topic, it’s a pretty important one for anyone that knows someone affected. Plus, I might include some photos of ice cream, or Ida, or some adorable kittens just to get you to scroll.

Thank you for reading and for learning along with us! Love, Meg

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