Prioritisation of allergenic foods with respect to public health relevance. Report from an ILSI Europe Food Allergy Task Force Expert Group

Geert Houben, Peter Burney, Chun Han Chan, René Crevel, Anthony Dubois, Roland Faludi, Rinke Klein Entink, André Knulst, Steve Taylor, Stefan Ronsmans

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

15 Scopus citations


Regulators and risk managers in general need to decide whether an allergenic food or ingredient is of such public health importance that it needs to be actively managed. There is therefore a need to scale the relative allergenicity of foods and ingredients according to the hazards they pose. Objective criteria increase transparency and trust in this decision-making process and its conclusions. This paper proposes a framework that allows categorisation and prioritisation of allergenic foods according to their public health importance. The challenge is to find a basis on which the allergenicity of foods can best be described and a method to combine the relevant measures of allergenicity into a scoring system that prioritises allergenic foods on the basis of their public health relevance. The framework is designed in accordance with the generic risk analysis principles used in food safety and can be used by regulators to decide whether or not a specific allergenic food or ingredient is of sufficient public health importance that it warrants regulation (i.e. mandatory labelling) when used in the production of food products.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8-18
Number of pages11
JournalFood and Chemical Toxicology
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016



  • Allergenic foods
  • Allergenicity scaling
  • Food Safety
  • Food toxicology
  • Hypersensitivity
  • Immunotoxicity
  • Immunotoxicology
  • Labelling
  • Prioritization
  • Public health importance
  • Risk assessment
  • Risk management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Toxicology

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