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Tarsia, Italy

Plumb J.,UK Institute of Food Research | Lyons J.,University College Cork | Norby K.,Technical University of Denmark | Thomas M.,UK Environment Agency | And 6 more authors.
Food Chemistry | Year: 2015

The newly developed ePlantLIBRA database is a comprehensive and searchable database, with up-to-date coherent and validated scientific information on plant food supplement (PFS) bioactive compounds, with putative health benefits as well as adverse effects, and contaminants and residues. It is the only web-based database available compiling peer reviewed publications and case studies on PFS. A user-friendly, efficient and flexible interface has been developed for searching, extracting, and exporting the data, including links to the original references. Data from over 570 publications have been quality evaluated and entered covering 70 PFS or their botanical ingredients. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd.

Rutsaert P.,Ghent University | Rutsaert P.,International Rice Research Institute | Pieniak Z.,Ghent University | Regan T.,University College Dublin | And 7 more authors.
Food Policy | Year: 2014

Although considerable progress has been made in understanding the determinants of risk perception and in identifying the necessary components of effective food risk and benefit communication, this has not been matched with the development of efficient and appropriate communication tools. Little work has been done examining the implications of the explosion of new media and web technologies, which may offer potential for improving food risk and benefit communication. First, this study examines the views of stakeholders (n= 38) and experts (n= 33) in the food domain on the potential use of these emerging media for food risk/benefit communication. Based on in-depth interviews in six European countries (Belgium, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Spain and The Netherlands), strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) of social media in food risk and benefit communication were identified. Second, a Strategic Orientation Round (SOR) was used to evaluate the relative importance of the SWOT components according to stakeholders (n= 10) and experts (n= 13). Results show that both stakeholders and experts confirm a future role of social media in food risk and benefit communication. Strengths as speed, accessibility and interaction make social media an interesting tool in crisis communication or issue awareness raising. Weaknesses as the lack of a filter, low trust, the risk of information overload and a communication preference for traditional media are acknowledged. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

DunnGalvin A.,University College Cork | Chan C.-H.,Food Standards Agency | Crevel R.,Colworth Science Park | Grimshaw K.,University of Southampton | And 29 more authors.
Allergy: European Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology | Year: 2015

Precautionary allergen labelling (PAL) was introduced by the food industry to help manage and communicate the possibility of reaction from the unintended presence of allergens in foods. However, in its current form, PAL is counterproductive for consumers with food allergies. This review aims to summarize the perspectives of all the key stakeholders (including clinicians, patients, food industry and regulators), with the aim of defining common health protection and risk minimization goals. The lack of agreed reference doses has resulted in inconsistent application of PAL by the food industry and in levels of contamination that prompt withdrawal action by enforcement officers. So there is a poor relationship between the presence or absence of PAL and actual reaction risk. This has led to a loss of trust in PAL, reducing the ability of consumers with food allergies to make informed choices. The result has been reduced avoidance, reduced quality of life and increased risk-taking by consumers who often ignore PAL. All contributing stakeholders agree that PAL must reflect actual risk. PAL should be transparent and consistent with rules underpinning decision-making process being communicated clearly to all stakeholders. The use of PAL should indicate the possible, unintended presence of an allergen in a consumed portion of a food product at or above any proposed action level. This will require combined work by all stakeholders to ensure everyone understands the approach and its limitations. Consumers with food allergy then need to be educated to undertake individualized risk assessments in relation to any PAL present. © 2015 John Wiley and Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley and Sons Ltd.

Bucchini L.,Hylobates Consulting Srl | Guzzon A.,Hylobates Consulting Srl | Poms R.,MoniQA Association | Senyuva H.,FoodLife International Ltd.
Food Additives and Contaminants - Part A Chemistry, Analysis, Control, Exposure and Risk Assessment | Year: 2016

As part of a European Union-funded project (FP7) developing ‘Integrated approaches to food allergen and allergy management’, a database was constructed based on publicly available information on food allergen recalls in Europe, North America, Hong Kong, Australia and New Zealand. Over 2000 entries were made into the database. The database covers a 4-year period from 2011 to 2014 and each entry is categorised into food type (two different classifications), identified allergen and cause where indicated by the authorities. Across different authorities, by far the biggest incidence of undeclared allergens occurred in the food categories of prepared dishes and snacks (range = 12–53%), and cereals and bakery products (range = 14–25% of all recalls and/or alerts). The biggest incidence of undeclared allergens, according to the information from most authorities, occurred for milk and milk products (16–31% of all products with recall or alert), followed by cereals containing gluten (9–19%), soy (5–45%), and egg and egg products (5–17%). Although 42–90% of the products with recalls/alerts were explained as being ‘Not indicated on the label’, this is a generic explanation of cause and does not provide much insight into the causes of the recall/alerts. However, 0–17% of products with recalls/alerts could be coded as caused by the unintended presence of an allergen as the probable result of cross-contact in production. Construction of the database of allergen recalls has provided some important lessons and recommendations to the authorities are made in this paper in terms of the harmonisation of the reporting of allergen recalls into a more standardised format. © 2016 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group

Timotijevic L.,University of Surrey | Brown K.A.,University of Surrey | Lahteenmaki L.,University of Aarhus | de Wit L.,University of Surrey | And 11 more authors.
Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition | Year: 2013

A key step toward developing appropriate evidence-based public health nutrition policies is determining exactly how that evidence should be collected and assessed. Despite this the extent to which different evidence bases influence policy selection is rarely explored. This article presents an epistemological framework which offers a range of considerations affecting this process generally and with particular implications for both micronutrient requirements and the role of behavior in the policy-making process. Qualitative case study data covering 6 European countries/regions (Czech Republic, Italy, the Netherlands, Nordic countries, Poland, and Spain), and three micronutrients (folate, iodine, and vitamin D), have been presented to illustrate the relevance of the Framework. © 2013 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.

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