Please Help us pass the Food Allergen Act

Posted on: Fri, 10/17/2003 - 1:31pm
momma2boys's picture
Offline
Joined: 03/14/2003 - 09:00

At the meeting tonight we discussed different courses of action in promoting our cause. The area we decided to put our effort in is getting the Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act.

What we need EVERYONE to do is write personally to your senators and congressmen and women. This is our chance to make a difference. A similar bill was recently passed in Europe and we can do it here too.

I am posting this link with info about the act and Im doing some research to find out when this bill is brought up again.

[url="http://www.shamrockbay.com/FA/FoodAllergenProtection.shtml"]http://www.shamrockbay.com/FA/FoodAllergenProtection.shtml[/url]

on this link you can click on house or senate and these links will take you to a place where you can find out the name and address of your representatives.

Every letter will help! I will keep you posted.

Posted on: Fri, 10/17/2003 - 11:48pm
PB hater's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/16/2003 - 09:00

I thought I would post a copy of the letter on foodallergyinitiative.org. I am going to personalize it a little but I think it's helpful to start with if you haven't written a letter like this before.
I am writing to respectfully request your support of the Food Allergen Consumer Protection Act.
Over seven million American children and adults suffer from food allergies. Recent studies estimate that each year over 200 Americans die due to the ingestion of allergenic foods and 30,000 receive life-saving treatment in emergency rooms. The good news is that with the government's help, many of these deaths and near-fatal incidents can be prevented.
The only way to avoid a potentially life-threatening food allergic reaction is to avoid the food allergen. Unfortunately, reading ingredient labels is difficult because ingredient statements are written for scientists, not consumers. There are over 30 of terms for milk and over 18 terms for egg. Furthermore, the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act exempts natural and artificial flavorings from ingredient labeling requirements. This is dangerous and wrong because these terms may refer to any food, including milk, egg, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, wheat, and soy

Posted on: Sat, 10/18/2003 - 12:49am
PB hater's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/16/2003 - 09:00

Here's my letter, feel free to use.
Dear
I am writing to respectfully request your support of the Food Allergen Consumer Protection Act.
My son has a fatal peanut allergy. I live in fear everyday and will for the rest of my life that he will eat something with unknown peanut in it and die quicker than anyone will be able to help him as the peanut allergy reaction is extremely swift and severe and is the number one cause of fatal food reactions. My heart breaks for my son everyday when I see children who are able to eat freely and not have to worry about allergic death from the everyday foods they eat. Right now there are very few companies that you can trust the labeling from and it makes our lives so hard to try and accomplish such a simple thing as eating meals that other people take for granted everyday. To pass this act and make companies responsible for telling us everything that is in their foods would make so much difference in our lives. Please help us.
My understanding is that the Food Allergen Consumer Protection Act, among other things, would: require that labels list in common language if any of the eight main food allergens are contained in the product; it would require that the main allergens be disclosed if used in spices, natural flavorings, additives and colorings

Posted on: Sat, 10/18/2003 - 1:10am
momma2boys's picture
Offline
Joined: 03/14/2003 - 09:00

Great letter!!!

Posted on: Sat, 10/18/2003 - 1:57am
PB hater's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/16/2003 - 09:00

Do we know what the timeline is for this bill - How much time we have to make contacts?

Posted on: Sat, 10/18/2003 - 5:23am
momma2boys's picture
Offline
Joined: 03/14/2003 - 09:00

Im trying to find that out, if anyone has any info please let us know.

Posted on: Sat, 10/18/2003 - 2:44pm
Dawn's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/22/1999 - 09:00

PB hater, thanks for posting those copies of the letters...makes it easier to get started when you've never written a letter like this before! I've sent my version off to my Representative and Senators. Will post any replies.

Posted on: Mon, 10/20/2003 - 12:26am
momma2boys's picture
Offline
Joined: 03/14/2003 - 09:00

[url="http://www.foodallergy.org/Advocacy/advocacy3.html"]http://www.foodallergy.org/Advocacy/advocacy3.html[/url]
this link contains tips on contacting your representatives.

Posted on: Mon, 10/20/2003 - 12:58am
momma2boys's picture
Offline
Joined: 03/14/2003 - 09:00

This lists the co-sponsors of this bill. Anyone who lives in the area they represent may want to write them asking for continues support, etc.
H.R.467
Title: To amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to require that foods containing spices, flavoring, or coloring derived from meat, poultry, other animal products (including insects), or known allergens bear labeling stating that fact and their names.
Sponsor: Rep Lowey, Nita M. [NY-18] (introduced 1/29/2003) Cosponsors: 12
Latest Major Action: 2/14/2003 Referred to House subcommittee. Status: Referred to the Subcommittee on Health.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Jump to: Titles, Status, Committees, Related Bill Details, Amendments, Cosponsors, Summary
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
TITLE(S): (italics indicate a title for a portion of a bill)
SHORT TITLE(S) AS INTRODUCED:
Food Ingredient Right to Know Act
OFFICIAL TITLE AS INTRODUCED:
To amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to require that foods containing spices, flavoring, or coloring derived from meat, poultry, other animal products (including insects), or known allergens bear labeling stating that fact and their names.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
STATUS: (color indicates Senate actions)
1/29/2003:
Referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.
2/14/2003:
Referred to the Subcommittee on Health.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
COMMITTEE(S):
Committee/Subcommittee: Activity:
House Energy and Commerce Referral
Subcommittee on Health Referral
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
RELATED BILL DETAILS:
***NONE***
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
AMENDMENT(S):
***NONE***
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
COSPONSORS(12), ALPHABETICAL [followed by Cosponsors withdrawn]: (Sort: by date)
Rep DeLauro, Rosa L. - 1/29/2003 [CT-3] Rep Frost, Martin - 2/27/2003 [TX-24]
Rep Kaptur, Marcy - 2/27/2003 [OH-9] Rep Kucinich, Dennis J. - 5/8/2003 [OH-10]
Rep Lee, Barbara - 1/29/2003 [CA-9] Rep Miller, George - 2/27/2003 [CA-7]
Rep Pallone, Frank, Jr. - 2/27/2003 [NJ-6] Rep Rothman, Steve R. - 5/8/2003 [NJ-9]
Rep Sanders, Bernard - 2/27/2003 [VT] Rep Schakowsky, Janice D. - 5/8/2003 [IL-9]
Rep Stark, Fortney Pete - 2/27/2003 [CA-13] Rep Woolsey, Lynn C. - 2/27/2003 [CA-6]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SUMMARY AS OF:
1/29/2003--Introduced.
Food Ingredient Right to Know Act - Amends the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to provide that a food shall be deemed to be misbranded if it contains any spice, flavoring, or coloring derived from meat, poultry, any other animal product (including insects), or a known food allergen unless its labeling bears a statement with appropriate prominence on the information panel providing that fact and the name of the meat, poultry, other animal product, or known food allergen.

Posted on: Mon, 10/20/2003 - 1:08am
momma2boys's picture
Offline
Joined: 03/14/2003 - 09:00

Bill Summary & Status for the 107th Congress
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Item 1 of 1
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
PREVIOUS:ALL | NEXT:ALL
NEW SEARCH | HOME | HELP
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
H.R.4704
Title: To amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to establish labeling requirements regarding allergenic substances in food, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep Lowey, Nita M. [NY-18] (introduced 5/9/2002) Cosponsors: 28
Related Bills: S.2499
Latest Major Action: 5/17/2002 Referred to House subcommittee. Status: Referred to the Subcommittee on Health.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Jump to: Titles, Status, Committees, Related Bill Details, Amendments, Cosponsors, Summary
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
TITLE(S): (italics indicate a title for a portion of a bill)
SHORT TITLE(S) AS INTRODUCED:
Food Allergen Consumer Protection Act
OFFICIAL TITLE AS INTRODUCED:
To amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to establish labeling requirements regarding allergenic substances in food, and for other purposes.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
STATUS: (color indicates Senate actions)
5/9/2002:
Referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.
5/17/2002:
Referred to the Subcommittee on Health.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
COMMITTEE(S):
Committee/Subcommittee: Activity:
House Energy and Commerce Referral
Subcommittee on Health Referral
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
RELATED BILL DETAILS: (additional related bills may be indentified in Status)
Bill: Relationship:
S.2499 Identical bill identified by CRS
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
AMENDMENT(S):
***NONE***
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
COSPONSORS(28), ALPHABETICAL [followed by Cosponsors withdrawn]: (Sort: by date)
Rep Brown, Sherrod - 7/8/2002 [OH-13] Rep DeFazio, Peter A. - 7/8/2002 [OR-4]
Rep DeLauro, Rosa L. - 5/23/2002 [CT-3] Rep Frank, Barney - 5/9/2002 [MA-4]
Rep Hinchey, Maurice D. - 6/4/2002 [NY-26] Rep Hoeffel, Joseph M. - 10/9/2002 [PA-13]
Rep Holt, Rush D. - 6/18/2002 [NJ-12] Rep Israel, Steve - 5/9/2002 [NY-2]
Rep Jones, Stephanie Tubbs - 5/9/2002 [OH-11] Rep Kildee, Dale E. - 5/9/2002 [MI-9]
Rep Kucinich, Dennis J. - 5/9/2002 [OH-10] Rep Langevin, James R. - 9/17/2002 [RI-2]
Rep Lee, Barbara - 5/9/2002 [CA-9] Rep Levin, Sander M. - 5/15/2002 [MI-12]
Rep McKinney, Cynthia A. - 5/9/2002 [GA-4] Rep Mink, Patsy T. - 5/9/2002 [HI-2]
Rep Morella, Constance A. - 5/9/2002 [MD-8] Rep Nadler, Jerrold - 5/9/2002 [NY-8]
Rep Neal, Richard E. - 10/8/2002 [MA-2] Rep Owens, Major R. - 5/9/2002 [NY-11]
Rep Price, David E. - 7/26/2002 [NC-4] Rep Rangel, Charles B. - 5/9/2002 [NY-15]
Rep Rivers, Lynn N. - 5/9/2002 [MI-13] Rep Rothman, Steve R. - 11/13/2002 [NJ-9]
Rep Roybal-Allard, Lucille - 5/23/2002 [CA-33] Rep Smith, Adam - 7/23/2002 [WA-9]
Rep Tierney, John F. - 10/9/2002 [MA-6] Rep Velazquez, Nydia M. - 5/9/2002 [NY-12]
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SUMMARY AS OF:
5/9/2002--Introduced.
Food Allergen Consumer Protection Act - Amends the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to require food labels to identify known food allergens contained therein or be deemed misbranded, without regard as to whether or not the presence of an allergen is intentional or unintentional.
Defines "known food allergen" to include milk, eggs, fish, Crustacea, tree nuts, wheat, peanuts, soybeans, other grains containing gluten, and any food the Secretary of Health and Human Services determines to cause allergic or adverse responses which endanger human health. Includes spices, flavorings, colorings, or incidental additives that are or contain a known food allergen.
Sets forth special requirements for raw agricultural commodities which are or contain a known food allergen.
Sets forth criteria for labels, requiring a format comparable to that required for the disclosure of nutrition information. Requires certain manufacturers, packers, or distributors to include a toll-free telephone number on such label.
Establishes civil penalties for violations of this Act.
Requires the Secretary to issue rules which address the use of good manufacturing practices to minimize the unintentional presence of allergens in food and advisory labeling if such allergens may be unintentionally present.
Requires the Secretary, acting through the Director of the Centers for Disease Control, to annually publish national data on the prevalence of food allergies and the incidence of deaths and injuries. Requires the Secretary to study the adequacy of existing data collection systems and possible alternative systems as well as educate health providers on improving data collection and analysis.

Posted on: Mon, 10/20/2003 - 2:53am
megans mommy's picture
Offline
Joined: 08/26/2003 - 09:00

I have been thinking of ways to get this bill passed. I will, of course, write to members of congress...as well as have every relative and friend I can get to write too.
Thanks for the copies of letters. I was thinking of something along those lines.... Could we get a brief form letter that we could run copies of. It would be so much easier to get others (family, friends) to send them.
I like the personalized letter also. I think for those who have PA, we have to let them know what it is like--perhaps even put a picture in the letter...to give PA (and all food allergies) a face for them. I know before I had to deal with food allergies, I had no clue what it was like. So you just don't eat peanuts (milk, eggs, whatever)--no big deal. And then reality hit...and you start really reading labels and doing research and calling companies(some not very friendly ones) to find out what is really in their product. Then you worry about the cross-contamination issues. You find you even have to do research with medications--since their inactive ingredients could be an allergen (and listed under those 'natural flavorings'). You find ingredients you would never dream of in a product (fish-anchovies in worst. sauce? wheat in liquorice? milk ingredients in suckers?). We have to remember we are most likely dealing with people (in congress) who have no idea about all this!! We have to make them understand and the bill will pass.
I also thought of how we could get more people to contact members of congress. Would petitions be good? Could we contact allergists and ask them to write letters also? Could we ask them to put form letters in their offices for people to pick up a copy and send if they are interested in helping the cause? Are there any allergy-aware companies that would write, or call, or speak with members of congress in their home state??
How about a one-on-one meeting with congress members? I know they don't have time to meet with us all, but maybe if we could get someone to present petitions or lots of letters at that time, as well as give them information and ask their support. Again, I just think letters and e-mails are great, but we need them to put a face with this. I cannot imagine them not supporting this if they could see all those little faces (and grown-up faces too--I just happen to have a small one, and tend to think in those terms! sorry!)
One last thing--what about other allergy sites/organizations?? Could we ask them to post a form letter on their sites?? And provide the links for the addresses for congrss members??
Sorry I'm rambling, but just some things I have been thinking!

Pages

Peanut Free Store

More Articles

You already know that if you or your child has a peanut allergy you need to avoid peanut butter. Some...

Do you have a sweet tooth and more specifically a chocolate craving? Those with peanut allergies must...

Peanuts and peanut oil are cheap and easy additives to food and other commercial goods. It is surprising (and alarming if you have a...

School nurses in Ohio are choosing not to carry emergency epinephrine due to ambiguities in the state's new allergy laws for schools. The...

Canola Oil Is Made From Rapeseed Plant

Rapeseed oil has been used in Europe for thousands of years, mostly as an industrial oil. It is...