|Food Safety Allergen Laws
Minimizing cross-contamination of allergens is an important part of overall food safety and quality. Tree nuts are among the eight most allergenic foods responsible for 90% of food allergies. While afflicting a small percentage of the overall population, food allergies, particularly peanuts and tree nuts, can be severe and even fatal.
Even if a person is not allergic to almonds, he or she may be allergic to other types of nuts. Therefore, it is very important for handlers to ensure that no other nuts--even in small amounts--are processed with, or come in contact with almonds. Whenever possible other nuts should NOT be processed in almond plants, particularly if using almond processing equipment. This safety measure will minimize cross-contamination of your almonds.
Allergen control program elements
- Identify and isolate any allergenic products in your processing facility.
- Determine process and packaging lines where allergens may be present.
- Establish a cleaning and verification program for process and packaging lines after allergen presence.
- Document all cleaning and verification activity.
- Train all employees on your Allergen Control Program. Allergen contamination control is a key component of an effective Good Manufacturing Practice program. As such, all employees should receive training at the time of employment and annually thereafter. A record of each training session must be maintained.
Download the full GMP manual.