Most catering companies and craft retailers do not properly tell their customers which allergens are in their food. Last year, 65 percent of the catering companies did not meet the requirements, while that was 51 percent of craft companies such as bakers, butchers and ice cream parlors.
That appears from research of the Dutch Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority (NVWA) among almost 6000 companies. At supermarkets and tokos, the information provision was below par at 41 percent of the companies surveyed.
Allergens are substances in foods that can make some people seriously ill or have an allergic reaction. Known allergens are gluten, cow’s milk and peanuts.
Entrepreneurs have been obliged since 2014 to mention allergens if they have been used in food preparation. This can be done both in writing and orally.
The NVWA issued 3,399 written warnings for the violations in the past year. The entrepreneur is then given time to rectify the violation. If you don’t, you risk a fine. Last year, the NVWA imposed 591 fines of 525 euros.
Several hundred thousand people in the Netherlands have a food allergy.