Individual food allergies
EU legislation recognises 14 food allergens as being responsible for the majority of food allergic reactions in Europe. If any of these food allergens have been added as deliberate ingredients to pre-packed food products, they must be displayed on the product label. Of these, peanut & tree nuts, fish & shellfish, egg, milk and wheat are most relevant for the island of Ireland.
Other food allergens
Of course there are many other food allergens that can cause problems for people in the EU. However, they are not as common as the 14 food allergens listed in the legislation and consequently they are not covered by allergen labelling requirements. Nonetheless, the information on the packaging should indicate their presence if they are used as a deliberate ingredient in a food product. On the island of Ireland, allergies to the following foods have also been recorded:
Fruits such as kiwi and strawberry
Tropical fruits such as mango, papaya
Other legumes such as beans and lentils