Later last year the FDA has finally begun the process which could lead to Sesame being added to the Top Allergens list .It should began to happen sometime this year! This would mean that sesame will be the 9th food Required to be labeled clearly on food packages. The other top food allergens are as listed: Soy * Peanuts * Tree Nuts * Milk * Shellfish * Fish Eggs * and Wheat.
As of now, sesame is listed as
** a spice
** natural flavors
** Benne or Tahini
This can make it tricky for those who react to sesame when buying pre packaged foods or when ordering food in restaurants. This also makes it Dangerous for those who are Severely allergic to sesame to consume foods other than what they are able to bring for themselves.
The U.K. is one of the few places where sesame is listed as a top allergen, but here in the states, and other Western countries, foods sold in venues like delis and sandwich shops aren't required to to have sesame listed as a potential dangerous allergen. ( or food sold anywhere else for that matter) So you could read a label on a sandwich buy and eat it believing it's safe, but since there's no required labeling for this seed it could be added as a flavoring in the meat, sauce, or the bread used, even though it states that it's allergen safe.
As of now, there is a draft federal legislation called the Food Labeling Modernization Act of 2018, which would require all Non-Packaged foods to have clear allergen labels. This legislation makes sesame allergy a priority, although I don't see why with serious reactions happening, there's not more immediate action being taken...but that's for another conversation! LOL!
We can do our part too and get hopefully get the ball moving and supporting the Food Labeling Modernization Act of 2018 by visiting the FARE's
Foodallergy.org to send a pre written letter to U.S. senators. Our voices matter, and we're the one's who can create the push to create changes for those of us who live with food allergies to make it safer to participate in the act everyone on earth does...Eating!
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