The Allergen Bureau were represented at the recent food allergy meetings held in Copenhagen, Denmark by Kirsten Grinter (Allergen Bureau President and Regulatory, Scientific Affairs and Nutrition Manager at Nestle Oceania) and Dr Simon Brooke Taylor (Food Safety & Risk Analysis Consultant, Allergen Bureau and VITAL® Scientific Expert Panel member). There were three key food allergy events, being the:
- 5th Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Meeting (FAAM 2018);
- Consumer Groups Partners in Action Day, as part of the International Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Alliance (IFAAA); and
- VITAL Scientific Expert Panel (VSEP) meeting.
FAAM 2018 is a leading event in the areas of food allergy and anaphylaxis. So much exciting research was shared spanning: the clinical and allergy research perspective; the allergic consumer management of anaphylaxis; the cofactors that determine the risk factors in anaphylaxis; as well as food technology and allergen risk management. Over 1,000 attendees participated in FAAM 2018 and this provided both Kirsten and Simon a unique opportunity to discuss food allergen issues of global relevance, with that knowledge able to inform the ongoing work of the Allergen Bureau to inform the food industry.
The IFAAA meeting gave the Allergen Bureau an opportunity to share the work of the Allergen Bureau with international consumer groups, as well as all of the partners and experts working in food allergy. The Consumer Groups Action Day was a fantastic meeting and you could feel the enthusiasm in the room as we are all contributing in different ways to improve and evolve allergy and allergen management. The Allergen Bureau presented on improving food choices for consumers with food allergy and what we have learnt from a cooperative and pre-competitive approach. To see Kirsten’s presentation Click Here.
The VITAL Scientific Expert Panel (VSEP) provide recommendations on food allergen Reference Doses/thresholds that form the scientific framework for the Allergen Bureau VITAL Program and VITAL Online. The Copenhagen VSEP meeting again brought together this amazing team of people and food allergen experts: Dr Steve Taylor (Chair of Panel) – Food Allergy Research & Resource Program (FARRP) (USA); Dr Joseph Baumert (FARRP); Dr Geert Houben – Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO); Dr Rene Crevel (RENE CREVEL Consulting Ltd); and Dr Simon Brooke Taylor (Food Safety & Risk Analysis Consultant, Allergen Bureau). Dr Katie Allen (Murdoch Children’s Research Institute) was an apology. The VSEP were supported by TNO, including Ben Remington (who has been a VSEP collaborator since 2011), Joost Westerhout, Marie Meima, Marty Blom and Astrid Kruizinga.
The VSEP meeting focussed on the latest science with regard to Reference Doses, the underpinning methodology and modelling approaches, next steps regarding publications, and outcomes for robust allergen risk review and management. It was fabulous to see the continued passion and momentum generated by everyone involved in the VSEP to ensure scientific rigour and credibility that supports stronger outcomes for both the allergic consumer and the food industry. The Allergen Bureau will provide more information about the outcomes from this VSEP meeting through our eNews in 2019, as we look to share next steps and impacts for the VITAL Program.