We get a couple of queries on allergies and cross-contamination every month.
People with allergies put themselves at serious risk by consuming vegan food products that unbeknown to them may contain allergens such as dairy.
Food allergy is serious business, and and the problem is increasing. Sometimes a morsel of wrong food can be fatal yet food allergies are largely considered a western problem.
Eating a food one is allergic to triggers the immune system to produce histamines to fight what it thinks is an external attack.
Most cross-contamination is avoidable and it happens in the manufacturing unit.
Today companies selling vegan products can be broadly categorised into 3 categories:
1) Non-vegan companies selling a vegan line.
2) Vegan companies manufacturing out of a dairy facility.
3) Vegan companies with 100% vegan manufacturing setups.
Let us explain:
The first kind are dairy companies trying to cash on the vegan buzz by launching a compliant product. For example: A greek yogurt company selling a plant-based yogurt or a dairy company selling a vegan chocolate would fall under this category. The chances of their product being cross-contaminated is extremely high because their product lines share the same infrastructure.
The second type are vegan companies who outsource their manufacturing to a third party vendor. The FSSAI mandates that the food label must clearly mention who markets the product and who manufactures. A google search on the manufacturer would reveal what else is being made in the facility. Many of these are again dairy setups. Also, a company selling white-labelled goods have little to no control over the manufacturing processes. Therefore products made in such shared facilities have good chance of being cross- contaminated.
The third type are company like ours who have skin in the game. We have built a 100% vegan setup of our own which gives us total manufacturing control.
There is 0% chance of casein-contamination in any of our products.
Let us know, If you have any specific questions on cross-contamination. Happy to help!