“Allergens – It’s Really Just a Management and Communication Issue” was presented at the 2015 Protein Trends & Technologies Seminar by Steve Taylor, Ph.D., Professor and Co-Director, Food Allergy Research and Resource Program, University of Nebraska.
Abstract: Almost all food allergens are proteins. Fortunately, most food proteins are not allergens. In food manufacturing, allergen control starts with product development. Many food companies seek to limit the development of new food products containing major allergenic foods such as peanut, tree nuts (e.g. walnuts, hazelnuts, etc.), milk, eggs, fish, shellfish, soybeans, and cereal sources of gluten. And increasingly food companies seek to develop gluten-free, dairy-free and other free-from products. In such circumstances, a search is often made for alternative protein sources that are “not allergens.” Scientifically speaking, this is probably a fruitless effort because the likelihood that a novel protein source will become a novel allergenic food is directly related to exposure. If a company develops a highly popular new food product that contains a novel protein source, that food is likely to become allergenic simply because of its widespread, frequent consumption. But smart choices can be made. Find out how.
Excerpt from the written summary of this presentation: Food allergies are abnormal responses of the human immune system to substances in food. “When an individual is exposed to protein, that exposure can stimulate the creation of IgE antibodies that create sensitivity to that protein. Individuals don’t have symptoms during the sensitization phase. The next time the individual is exposed to the protein, however, the body reacts and releases a host of physiologically active substances in tissues and the bloodstream,” explained Taylor in his presentation titled “Allergens—It’s Really Just a Management and Communications Issue.”
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