Food diagnostic kit manufacturer R-Biopharm Rhône has demonstrated the effectiveness of two of its allergen test kits in quantifying peanut and almond contaminations in spices.
The UK-based company claimed that the results offered “potential solutions to the latest nuts-in-spices scandal”. Earlier this week, the Food Standards Agency launched an investigation after almonds were detected in packets of cumin and paprika. Following a failure of the cumin harvest in India, some commentators have speculated that the contamination may have been a deliberate attempt to “bulk up” the mixes – similar to the 2013 horsemeat scandal.
Now the manufacturer has proven experimentally that its Ridascreen Fast peanut and almond test kits can identify traces of nuts in spices, allowing food producers to correctly label allergens and prevent a range of reactions in affected consumers – including abdominal pain, anaphylactic shock and even death in severe cases.
R-Biopharm Rhône managing director Simon Bevis said: “Once again, the integrity of the food which consumers are being offered is in question, and the need for standards on which consumers can rely is reinforced.
“Food producers and test laboratories need reliable analytical methods for detection and quantification of foreign elements and R-Biopharm’s test kits have been proven to provide the answers. These tests, carried out in controlled circumstances, have the ability to help safeguard public health and will allow consumers to have greater confidence in products which they are eating on a regular basis.”
Product manager Claire Milligan added: “Food safety is a vitally important issue and the industry has to be able to be sure that products which people will consume are as safe as it is possible to make them.
“R-Biopharm Rhône’s testing procedures are continually evolving and operate at high levels of sensitivity to meet increasingly stringent legislation.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2021
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