Food groups for allergen risk assessment: Combining food consumption data from different countries in Europe

Sophie Birot, Charlotte Bernhard Madsen*, Astrid G Kruizinga, Amélie Crépet, Tue Christensen, Per B. Brockhoff

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


To prevent allergic reactions, food producers have to be able to make a knowledge based decision on whether to label their products with precautionary labelling. As many manufactured food products are sold in different countries across Europe, the allergen risk assessment should be estimated at the European levels. As currently, there are no pan-European food data suitable for food allergy risk assessment. The aim of this paper is to investigate if consumption data, at a meal level, from National Food Consumption Surveys, can be combined to form a common Food Consumption database. In this first attempt we developed a procedure to investigate, if national food consumption data can be combined and grouped using data from Netherlands, France and Denmark. The homogeneity of consumption patterns and the relevance of difference in risk of allergic reaction were compared, using a fixed framework of allergen concentration levels and threshold distribution. Thus, the relevance of using common consumption data across countries was verified. The food groups formed were subsequently evaluated and adjusted based on practical considerations. It resulted in designing 61 food groups that can be used for allergen risk assessment. The summary statistics and descriptive names for each food group are included.
Original languageEnglish
JournalFood and Chemical Toxicology
Pages (from-to)371-381
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • Food allergy
  • Food groups
  • National food consumption surveys
  • Risk assessment


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