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H.Res. 30 (ath) Designating minority membership on certain standing committees of the House. [Agreed to House] ...
106th CONGRESS 1st Session H. RES. 309 Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives regarding strategies to better protect millions of Americans with food allergies from potentially fatal allergic reactions, and to further assure the safety of manufactured food from inadvertent allergen contamination. _______________________________________________________________________ IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES September 28, 1999 Mrs. Morella submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Commerce _______________________________________________________________________ RESOLUTION Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives regarding strategies to better protect millions of Americans with food allergies from potentially fatal allergic reactions, and to further assure the safety of manufactured food from inadvertent allergen contamination. Whereas up to 5.2 million Americans have potentially lethal food allergies, and the incidence is increasing yearly; Whereas an estimated 125 deaths per year result from fatal allergic reactions to food in the United States; Whereas the majority of those affected by food allergies are children, but the most serious allergies--peanuts, shellfish, fish, and tree nuts--are lifelong; Whereas eight major allergens--peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, eggs, milk, soy, and wheat--comprise 90 percent of allergic reactions; Whereas at present no vaccine or allergy injection treatment exists for serious food allergies--only a lifetime of absolute avoidance of the allergen prevents potentially fatal anaphylactic reaction; Whereas the expectation of a safe food supply for all is an American right; Whereas the prevalence and seriousness of food allergies is well-known and documented to the food manufacturing and processing industry; Whereas potentially fatal allergen ingredients may actually be introduced into the manufacturing process by the practice of ``sharing'' production lines with allergen and nonallergen containing products, a practice typically unknown to the consumer, and that this dangerous practice is avoidable; Whereas the current practice of labeling foods for potential allergens is helpful, but not a substitute for preventing the contamination of the product in the first place, and is of no benefit to a child or adult consuming a contaminated product which is not in its factory wrapper, or while in a restaurant or another home; and Whereas previous threats to the public safety and confidence as a result of product tampering and poisonings have already set a precedent for undertaking improvements in manufacturing processes to better protect the American public from similarly grave and preventable risk, and at acceptable cost: Now, therefore, be it Resolved, That it is the sense of the House of Representatives that-- (1) major commercial food processors and producers should resolve to the greatest extent possible to produce products containing key life-threatening allergens on separate, dedicated manufacturing lines; (2) labelled ingredient listings, such as ``natural flavors'' or ``vegetable protein'' or other similar terms, should specify their allergenic ingredients clearly by name if those ingredients are key allergens (e.g., ``Natural flavors (includes peanuts)''); (3) allergens should be identified in terms understandable to average citizens (such as ``includes milk products'' rather than ``includes casein''); (4) foods which are common, life-threatening allergens should not be added gratuitously to products where their contribution to taste is negligible, and where their presence would not reasonably be expected (e.g., shrimp extract in frozen beef teriyaki, or pecans in packaged raspberry cookies); (5) industry, consumer, and scientific groups should voluntarily work together for the purpose of better educating food industry workers and the public on the issues of food allergy safety; and (6) an assessment of the impact and success of these initiatives should be made not later than one year after the date of adoption of this resolution and reported to the resolution's sponsors. <all>
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