Adrian Arias | Valladolid (EFE).- Forty percent of the world’s population has some type of allergy or intolerance to one or more foods and, for them, shopping can be an odyssey until they find the product that will not make them sick; a task that the newly created NutSafe food label now wants to facilitate.
As the creator of this food label, Cristina Alonso, explains in an interview with Agencia EFE, NutSafe is a badge that “turns the tedious shopping process for someone with allergies into something safe and simple”, especially for children, who at a glance they will be able to know whether or not they can eat something.
No more “may contain traces” or the “what ingredient does it put here?” when it looks bad on the label or cannot be read directly. Problems that Alonso, the mother of a teenager with a serious allergy to certain nuts and that was the germ of her seal, ran into day after day.
According to the Spanish Association of People with Food and Latex Allergy (AEPNAA), this problem is progressively increasing among the child and adult population, so its social impact is increasing, in a problem that in Castilla y León can affect to more than 73,000 people and which prompted the health system to open a specific section on these pathologies on its website, which details some measures to prevent these allergies.
Recommendations that go through always paying special attention to the ingredients of food and avoiding contamination when cooking and already, in case of contact with the substance, have the appropriate medicine nearby.
Some steps well known to allergy sufferers, who also demand “more information” about what they can and cannot eat, says Alonso, who stresses that this is where correct product labeling could save “many headaches” for people people with severe allergies.
Because of this lack of clarity, the easiest option for those allergic to one or several foods, the so-called cross allergies, is to follow a very restrictive diet to avoid episodes, when with a little more information they could follow a much more varied within its possibilities.
The reluctance of the companies
For this reason, Alonso does not understand the reluctance of many food chains and factories to incorporate improvements in their labeling: «There are pastry products that do not include nuts and do not highlight them on their packaging. I don’t understand why, if we would all win, “he laments.
In addition, the creator of this food stamp compares the “acceptance” that some labels such as zero percent fat or “light” referring to sugars have and the little or nothing that other information that can be vital is reflected on the packaging for the consumer, such as the presence of nuts.
Milk, eggs, cereals and nuts head this podium of products susceptible to producing allergies, a problem on the rise and which the European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology estimates that by 2025 it could affect one in two Europeans, so the information It will be “key” to ensure the “well-being” of all these people, concludes Alonso.EFE