Codex pushes proactivity in food allergen management

Codex Alimentarius is the food standards-setting body of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO). At their most recent meeting, held virtually for the first time in history, a Code of Practice on food allergen management for businesses was adopted.

The code is intended to facilitate a proactive approach to managing allergens in food production, rather than a reactive response once a food safety hazard has been identified. It provides guidance on allergen management throughout the production process, including controls to prevent cross-contact where an allergen is inadvertently transferred from a food containing an allergen to a food that does not contain the allergen.

Taking a whole supply chain approach, the code spans primary production, manufacturing, and retail and food service, and supplements both the newly-adopted, revised General Principles of Food Hygiene as well as the ongoing work on allergen labelling by the Codex Committee on Food Labelling.

The 8-step process to develop the Code has been led by the Codex Committee on Food Hygiene, as allergen management practices are an integral part of good food hygiene practice.

Access the 21-page Code of Practice on Food Allergen Management for Food Business Operators here.