Is there a law that requires food labels to list ingredients that commonly cause food allergies along with other problems?



The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires food labels to clearly identify the 8 major food allergens:

  • Milk
  • Eggs
  • Fish
  • Shellfish
  • Tree Nuts
  • Peanuts
  • Wheat
  • Soybeans 

The allergen may be identified in one of two ways:

1. In parenthesis following the name of the ingredient. For example: 

Ingredients: Unbleached enriched  flour (wheat), sugar, butter (milk)

2. As a separate statement underneath the ingredients list. For example:

This product contains wheat and milk

The above major food allergens are responsible for 90% of food allergies, however, those with allergies that are not on this list will need to carefully read through the ingredients to ensure the food product is safe to eat. For more information, visit

This post was written by Monica Griffin, MS, RD, LD.