Many consumers have recently voiced their complaints concerning allergy labels on certain products. You have all seen on a candy bar or snack item the words “may contain nuts,” but what does this really mean? The truth is, most consumers don’t know the answer to that question. Individuals with allergies are forced to either scrutinize each and every label or assume the risk and danger that are eminent when purchasing these products. Therefore, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has agreed to host a public hearing in order to decide what the best course of action would be. The popular choice seems to be for the FDA to have a standard number of descriptions that are clear and concise. One option is to require manufacturers to cite statistics to correctly define what “trace amount” means – “one part per million,” for example.
In 2004, lawmakers signed The Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act which ‘required new labels on packaged foods containing “major food allergens,” such as: milk, eggs, fish, Crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, wheat, peanuts and soybeans, or any other ingredient that contains protein derived from one of these foods. In reality, food allergies affect about 2 percent of adults and 5 percent of infants and young children in the United States. They can either be minor and simply bothersome or it could be the determining factor in whether they live or die. Statistics show that there are around 30,000 consumers who are brought into the emergency room each year to get treatment for food allergies. About 150 of these Americans die. Those are grave consequences.
Although some manufacturers argue that this will not make a significant difference since it is impossible to be 100 percent accurate; but improvements are a start and especially when people’s lives are at risk. If the FDA were to require stricter labeling, those with serious food allergies may be able to understand more about the ingredients and make wiser decisions for themselves and their health. If you have been erroneously mislead by a manufacturer’s label and are suffering the effects of this, do not hesitate to contact: Eberstein & Witherite, LLP Law firm. They are dedicated medical malpractice lawyers who commit to guarantee that you or your loved one is compensated for damages endured.Eberstein & Witherite, LLP / Dallas Injury Lawyers Law Office of Eberstein & Witherite 3100 Monticello, Suite 500 Dallas, Texas 75205 Toll Free: (888) 407-6669