Because of spam, I personally moderate all comments left on my blog. However, because of health issues, I will not be able to do so in the future.

If you have a personal question about LI or any related topic you can send me an email at I will try to respond.

Otherwise, this blog is now a legacy site, meaning that I am not updating it any longer. The basic information about LI is still sound. However, product information and weblinks may be out of date.

In addition, my old website, Planet Lactose, has been taken down because of the age of the information. Unfortunately, that means links to the site on this blog will no longer work.

For quick offline reference, you can purchase Planet Lactose: The Best of the Blog as an ebook on or Almost 100,000 words on LI, allergies, milk products, milk-free products, and the genetics of intolerance, along with large helpings of the weirdness that is the Net.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Hong Kong Food Labeling Law to Reveal Dairy

The Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act (FALCPA) of 2004 gave the food industry until January 1, 2006 to change the ingredients labeling on packaged foods so that any presence of the major allergens had to be made specific and obvious. They weren't happy about it, but today food labels make it easier for all those with dairy allergy and other food allergies to know exactly what's in the foods they're thinking of buying.

Many countries have passed similar laws, with similar delays. Everywhere the food industry has grumbled, dragged their heels, and held out until the last minute, if not beyond.

It's Hong Kong's turn.

The 36-month grace period of their Food & Drugs (Composition & Labelling) (Amendment) Regulation will expire on July 9. A Hong Kong government web site, Health & Community reported on the law.

The new law requires the declaration on prepackaged food labels the presence of the eight most common allergy causing substances - cereals containing gluten, crustaceans and crustacean products, eggs and egg products, fish and fish products, milk and milk products (including lactose), tree nuts and nut products, sulphite, and peanuts, soybeans and their products. These allergens account for more than 90% of all food allergic reactions.

Center for Food Safety

Unfortunately, a preliminary study on peanut and tree nut allergens, made public by Centre for Food Safety Community Medicine Consultant Dr Ho Yuk-yin, found that 18 of 53 samples had an unreported presence. This means that the industry still hasn't caught up.

Same old story, wherever you go. One by one the countries of the world will force labeling to be complete, accurate, and clear. As much of a capitalist as I am, I'm fully aware that no industry ever polices itself or voluntarily supplies all the information that consumers need. Government intervention is an absolute necessity everywhere. Sorry, libertarians.

Bookmark and Share

No comments: