17 Juil What You Didn’t Know About Peanut Free Labels in Canada
If your child is allergic to peanuts the peanut free label is the first thing you look for when shopping for grocery items. Food allergies are sensitivities caused by a reaction of the body’s immune system to specific proteins in food. According to AllerGen the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice reported 7.5% of all Canadians admit to having at least one food allergy. According to this research 2.5 million Canadians suffer from food allergies. Of that 7.5 percent 1.93 percent have a peanut allergy. It was also discovered that peanut allergies were much more common in children than adults.
Canada’s Food Allergen Policy and Food Labelling Explained
Health Canada defines a “food allergen” as any protein from any of the following foods, or any modified protein, including any protein fraction that is derived from any of the following foods:
- almonds, Brazil nuts, cashews, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts, pecans, pine nuts, pistachios or walnuts;
- sesame seeds;
- wheat or triticale;
- fish; or
- mustard seeds. (allergène alimentaire)
10 top food allergens make up the majority of all food allergies in Canada. These are defined by Health Canada and include: peanuts, egg, soy, sesame seeds, milk, seafood, tree nuts, sulphites, wheat and mustard.
The labelling regulations of food processed in Canada is a very strict process that all food manufacturers and processors must oblige by law. Apart from listing ingredients in order by their amount, labels also must have clear naming of every ingredient down to the exact protein. Following these Canadian food labelling rules a product has to go through even more rigorous regulations to be legally allowed to place the peanut-free label on the food product. Manufacturers like Royal nuts who make a negative statement or claim such as “peanut-free” must ensure there is absolutely no amount of the named food allergen source present in the product, whether through intentional or inadvertent means. These claims are permitted on foods that have been processed under special conditions to ensure the absence of the named food allergen source that may be present in a similar food.
Learn more about food labelling with Food Inspection Canada’s Interactive Food Label Tool.
Royal Nuts is Serious about Peanut Free Nuts and Dried Fruit
We take peanut allergies extremely seriously. That’s why we have super rigorous quality measures in place BEFORE WE EVEN ACCEPT a shipment of nuts into our facility. All of our dried fruit and nut suppliers, up to our tape and garbage bag suppliers must be peanut free. Allergen reports affiliated to each lot number of each raw material must be sent over to us before purchase of all fruit and nuts.
Each lot of nuts must come with a quality certificate which shows through laboratory testing it is free of nuts. When the truck arrives, a full truck inspection is to be done prior to bringing in any of our raw material content to ensure none of the packaging has been damaged. If all is clear, we accept the shipment. If even one package of produce has been damaged in any way, the entire truckload is rejected and sent back.
Internally among our staff we have clear peanut free protocols in place. All employees sign a contract acknowledging the policy to prevent peanut contamination. Within our manufacturing facilities there are Peanut free signs everywhere.
After production, the finished product undergoes more quality testing to ensure there is no presence of peanuts.
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is aware of the policy we placed so they are fully aware of our food manufacturing processes and food treatment methods. As a proactive preventive method to ensure our products are peanut free, we also do false recalls to improve our recall processes should the day of a real issue come.
We recognize the importance of having peanut free dried fruit and peanut free nuts. That’s why we are working hard this spring to load up our peanut free nuts in a grocery store near you! Here are the stores that currently carry Royal Nuts.
Is your favourite grocery store not on the list? You can request our product! Download this form, print it out, and give it to your grocery store manager.
Have a question about Royal Nuts? Please leave a comment below. And remember to keep in touch with us on our Royal Nuts Facebook page.