Background and Objectives
Food allergy is of high importance to public health, affecting consumers’ quality of life (mainly of children) and impacting health service resources. There is growing evidence that this impact is increasing at a global level as developing countries adopt a Western lifestyle. Symptoms of food allergy range from a tingling sensation in the mouth to life-threatening anaphylactic shock. Minimising the risk from allergenic foods is a shared responsibility of all the stakeholders involved (e.g. patients, clinicians, food manufacturers, retailers, caterers and regulators). The Food Allergy Task Force aims to foster an international consensus on how to assess the risk and the standards necessary to achieve this goal.
- Over the past 19 years, the Food Allergy Task Force has significantly contributed to the understanding of food allergy as a food safety issue and to the development of risk assessment approaches to address it, such as defining reference doses, prioritisation of allergens of public health importance.
- It has produced 12 peer-reviewed publications and organised several international workshops (e.g. ’Frontiers in Food Allergen Risk Assessment’, 2010; ‘Food Allergy: From Thresholds to Action Levels’, 2012) that have helped move the way forward.
- The task force and its expert groups consist of a strong network of international experts and include among their partners world-class experts and leading organisations such as the Food Allergy Research & Resource Program (FARRP) and the European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (EAACI).
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