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What are the 10 major allergens?

January 13th , 2020 by

Under Australia and New Zealand Food Standards (ANZFS), there are 10 major allergens that you need to be aware of. You must be able to disclose the presence of these allergens in any food you serve when requested by a customer:

“If the food is not in a package or is not required to have a label (for example, food prepared at and sold from a takeaway shop), this information must either be displayed in connection with the food or provided to the purchaser if requested.” (ANZFS website; Allergen labelling, September 2019)

Below is a list of the 10 major allergens that need to be disclosed, along with some examples of where they can be found. This should form part of your food safety system.

Wheat: often found in foods containing flour, such as some types of baking powder, batter, breadcrumbs, bread, cakes, couscous, meat products, pasta, pastry, sauces, soups and fried foods which are dusted with flour.

Eggs: Eggs are often found in cakes, some meat products, mayonnaise, mousses, pasta, quiche, sauces and pastries. Watch out for foods brushed or glazed with eggs such as pies.

Fish: You will find fish in some Asian sauces, pizzas, relishes, salad dressings, stock cubes and Worcestershire sauce.

Crustacea: Crabs, lobster, prawns and scampi are crustaceans. Shrimp paste, often used in Thai and south-east Asian curries or salads, is an ingredient to look out for.

Lupin: Lupin flour and seeds can be used in some types of bread, pastries and even in pasta.

Milk: a common ingredient in butter, cheese, cream, milk powders, ice cream and yoghurt. It can also be found in foods brushed or glazed with milk, and in powdered soups and sauces.

Tree nuts: Not to be mistaken with peanuts (which are actually a legume and grow underground), this ingredient refers to nuts that grow on trees, like cashew nuts, almonds and hazelnuts. You can find nuts in bread, biscuits, crackers, desserts, nut powders (often used in Asian curries), stir-fried dishes, ice cream, marzipan (almond paste), nut oils and sauces.

Peanuts: A legume that grows underground, the peanut is also known as groundnut. Peanuts are often used as an ingredient in biscuits, cakes, curries, desserts, sauces (such as satay sauce), as well as in groundnut oil and peanut flour.

Sesame seeds: These seeds can often be found in bread (sprinkled on hamburger buns for example), breadsticks, houmous, sesame oil and tahini. They are sometimes toasted and used in salads.

Soy: Often found in bean curd, edamame beans, miso paste, textured soya protein, soya flour or tofu, soya is a staple ingredient in oriental food. It can also be found in bread, desserts, ice cream, meat products, sauces and vegetarian products.

Sulphites must also be declared if added at 10 (or more) milligrams per kilogram of food. This is an ingredient often used in dried fruit such as raisins, dried apricots and prunes. You might also find it in meat products, soft drinks, vegetables as well as in wine and beer. People with asthma, have a higher risk of developing a reaction to sulphur dioxide.

Monika’s digital food safety system includes a special allergens function, where you can set up your menu and associate each item with any allergens they contain. When taking an order, your wait staff can then use the Monika Smart PA device to identify which meals the customer can or cannot eat. This arms your staff with the knowledge to be able to answer customers’ questions and helps your customers choose a menu item that is safe for them.

The Monika Smart PA device has an allergens function to help keep your customers informed

To find out more about our allergens feature and other useful functions included in our digital food safety systems, contact us on 1300 857 025 for a free demonstration.

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