I rolled up my sleeve and turned my hand palm up. The doctor placed a medieval looking torture device, 18 needles loaded with potential allergic venom right onto my little kid arm. Then, BAM – shot it right into me. Then we waited to see what, if anything, would happen. Would one of those spots react? Would we see some swelling? Where the hell was my lollipop? Hopefully we wouldn’t discover that I was allergic to sugar.
Okay, so maybe that description is a bit dramatic. I do hope that allergy testing protocol has improved over the decades.
Do you have allergies? Is there a certain time of year that makes you sneeze up a storm, your eyes water and you wonder when the pollen is going to ease up?
It is uncomfortable. And if you have or crossed paths with people that have a food allergy… it is way more than uncomfortable. It can be deadly.
In America alone, there are 15 million+ people with food allergies.
Here are the most common culprits in the world of food allergies:
- Tree nuts
- Fish & shellfish
Be aware, even if these items are not an ingredient in what you are producing- cross contact (the transferring of allergens from one food to another food) can create reactions as well.
Here are a few of the mild symptoms:
- Redness of the skin or around the eyes
- Nausea or vomiting
- Stomach pain
- Nasal congestion
Here are some of the severe allergic reactions:
- Obstructive swelling of the lips, tongue, and/or throat
- Trouble swallowing
- Shortness of breath or wheezing
- Drop in blood pressure (feeling faint, confused, weak, passing out)
- Loss of consciousness
Management and kitchen staff must be thoroughly trained regarding the dangers of food allergens and cross contact. Food safety training can help prevent your customers or patients from having a food-allergic reaction, which can lead to a medical emergency.
Here is a document, developed by the Food Allergy Research and Resource Program (FARRP) and the University of Nebraska, that shares details about how to create a manufacturing plan to ensure safe production with a focus on reducing potential allergic reactions.
In the cannabis industry, I know we are committed to contributing to people’s wellness. And when we produce infused products, ensuring that your patients receive a wholesome product is essential.
Here’s to your team increasing their knowledge, creating the best products and your thriving success with raving (hiveless) fans!