Allergen Contamination

I work for the children’s executive who is under the Health and Social services umbrella. We operate six separate units, of which three are residential homes for children between the ages of eleven, and sixteen years, two hostels for teenagers between sixteen and eighteen years of age and one secure facility. There is a total of approximately sixty staff employed across this service both full and part time and one chef is employed at each unit to cater for residents and staff.
I am responsible for the smooth running of the kitchens and I am also assigned to educate the children in basic life skills, for example cooking, food budgets, how to shop and menu planning, this enables the children to have some catering skills in preparation for a time when they leave the care system and have to care for themselves.
In this assignment I will explain allergen contamination controls and how they comply with current legislation and codes of practice in my workplace.   

First of all unlike all the other contamination has become more prevalent in recent years. Like other contamination issues allergen contamination has always been an issue but it appears that as other hazards have been reduced allergies seem to have increased. More and more people are developing nut allergies, require gluten free diets, lactose intolerance etc.
To date nobody knows why food allergies have increased, although there are many theories. On a personal note my brother suffered from a nut allergy, but this was not detected until the age of 32 years when he ate a cashew nut, even though as a child he had eaten peanuts, brazil nuts etc. this has made me aware that nut allergies can develop at any time or can be specific to one particular variety.
Some people have sensitivity to certain foods that non-sufferers would find harmless. A severe food allergy can cause a life-threatening reaction.   However, food intolerance does not involve the immune system and is not generally...