Are you eating hazardous food?

There is evidence to suggest that food handlers who wear latex gloves may contaminate the food with latex allergens and are themselves at risk of developing latex allergy. It has been demonstrated that when cross-contaminated food is eaten by a person with latex allergy, it can cause an allergic reaction.

Several petitions have been filed to have LATEX classified as a strong sensitizer. “Strong sensitizer” means a substance which will cause on normal living tissue, through an allergic or photodynamic process, a hypersensitivity.  Any substance or mixture of substances which is toxic, corrosive, an irritant, a strong sensitizer, flammable or combustible,
or generates pressure through decomposition, heat, or other means, if such substance or mixture of substances may cause substantial personal injury or substantial illness during or as a proximate result of any customary or reasonably foreseeable handling or use, including reasonably foreseeable ingestion by children.

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3 Comments

  1. Posted June 2, 2008 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

    Please be informed that:
    Firstly, although some would like to believe that the use of latex gloves in food handling could cause latex protein allergy via ingestion, this however, is not the case. This is confirmed by the Food and Drug Adminstiration. After a thorough examination of the issue by a panel of experts in 2003, the FDA Food Advisory Committee concluded that the relationship between latex allergy and the use of latex gloves in food handling is very weak; reports of allergic reactions are anecdotal in nature, and not supported by scientific evidence. (Please see http:;//www.fda.gov, and also the above-mentioned website – under Food Safety.)

    Secondly, latex is not classified as a ‘Strong sensitizer”, although there was an attempt to petition this to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. But the petition failed to be accepted in 2003. This again, was due to lack of sound scientific supporting evidence. (http://www.cpsc.gov.)

    You may like to update your readers with the correct information.

    Thank you.

    p.s please ignor the previous commsent with typo errors.

  2. Posted June 3, 2008 at 3:33 am | Permalink

    I updated my post. Thanks for pointing it out.

  3. Posted June 3, 2008 at 3:37 am | Permalink

    Over the past few years, there has been an increasing incidence of allergic reactions among health care workers and food handlers to latex medical gloves. Current estimates on the prevalence of latex allergy among health care workers range as high as 17%. With this many people allergic to LATEX it needs to be a classified as a hazardous substance. And it needs to be decided soon.


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