Skip to main content

Changes to allergen labelling

New requirements for labelling the most common allergens in food commenced on 25 February 2021. 

The changes to the Food Standards Code will help people find allergen information on food labels more quickly and easily, so they can make informed and safe food choices. 

The changes include: 

  • using consistent names that are simple, plain English and in bold font 

  • displaying declarations in a specific format and location on food labels 

Food businesses have 3 years to transition to the new requirements, plus an additional 2 years for food that has been correctly labelled before 25 February 2024.

During the 3 year transition, allergen declarations must follow the old or the new system. They cannot be a combination of both.

What are the changes?

Location and format

Declarations of one or more allergens must appear in the ingredient list and a co-located summary statement.

In the ingredient list and summary statement, allergen declarations must be in:

  • bold font that contrasts distinctly with other text; and
  • the same size or greater type

In the summary statement, allergen declarations must say:

  • ‘Contains: (name of allergen/s)’

Allergen names

Required names listed in Schedule 9 of the Food Standards Code must be used for declarations.

In the ingredient list 

In the summary statement  

Additional information 

sulphites 

sulphites 

Added sulphites in concentrations of 10 mg/kg or more 

barley 

gluten 

Includes hybridised strains  

oats 

gluten 

Includes hybridised strains  

rye 

gluten 

Includes hybridised strains  

wheat 

wheat; and 

gluten if it is present 

Includes hybridised strains

almond 

almond 

 

Brazil nut 

Brazil nut 

 

cashew 

cashew 

 

hazelnut 

hazelnut 

 

macadamia 

macadamia 

 

pecan 

pecan 

 

pine nut 

pine nut 

 

pistachio 

pistachio 

 

walnut 

walnut 

 

crustacean 

crustacean 

 

egg 

egg 

 

fish 

fish 

 

lupin 

lupin 

 

milk 

milk 

Includes all milk produced by animals 

mollusc 

mollusc 

 

peanut 

peanut 

 

sesame 

sesame 

 

soy, soya or soybean 

soy 

 

Exemptions

Food 

Exemptions 

barley 

oats 

rye 

present in beer or spirits 

wheat 

  • present in beer or spirits; 

  • glucose syrups made from wheat starch and that:

    • have been subject to a refining process that has removed gluten protein content to the lowest level that is reasonably achievable; and

    • have a gluten protein content that does not exceed 20 mg/kg 

  • alcohol distilled from wheat 

fish 

Isinglass derived from fish swim bladders and used as a clarifying agent in beer or wine 

milk 

Alcohol distilled from whey 

soybean 

  • soybean oil that has been degummed, neutralised, bleached and deodorised 

  • soybean derivatives that are tocopherol or phytosterol 

Precautionary allergen labelling

There are no changes to precautionary allergen labelling such as ‘May contain’ statements.

However, it is recommended that food businesses consider the benefit to consumers of consistency with the changes to allergen labelling when making these statements.

For more information about precautionary allergen labelling for industry, visit the Allergen Bureau website.