Translating reference doses into allergen management practice: Challenges for stakeholders

René W.R. Crevel, Joseph L. Baumert, Stefano Luccioli, Athanasia Baka, Sue Hattersley, Jonathan O.B. Hourihane, Stefan Ronsmans, Frans Timmermans, Rachel Ward, Yong joo Chung

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Risk assessment describes the impact of a particular hazard as a function of dose and exposure. It forms the foundation of risk management and contributes to the overall decision-making process, but is not its endpoint. This paper outlines a risk analysis framework to underpin decision-making in the area of allergen cross-contact. Specifically, it identifies challenges relevant to each component of the risk analysis: risk assessment (data gaps and output interpretation); risk management (clear and realistic objectives); and risk communication (clear articulation of risk and benefit). Translation of the outputs from risk assessment models into risk management measures must be informed by a clear understanding of the model outputs and their limitations. This will lead to feasible and achievable risk management objectives, grounded in a level of risk accepted by the different stakeholders, thereby avoiding potential unintended detrimental consequences. Clear, consistent and trustworthy communications actively involving all stakeholders underpin these objectives. The conclusions, integrating the perspectives of different stakeholders, offer a vision where clear, science-based benchmarks form the basis of allergen management and labelling, cutting through the current confusion and uncertainty. Finally, the paper recognises that the proposed framework must be adaptable to new and emerging evidence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)277-287
Number of pages11
JournalFood and Chemical Toxicology
StatePublished - May 2014


  • Eliciting dose
  • Food allergy
  • Probabilistic modelling
  • Public health
  • Reference dose
  • Risk assessment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Toxicology


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