The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is reminding manufacturers that effective January 1st, 2023, foods containing sesame will be subject to specific food allergen regulatory requirements, including labeling and manufacturing requirements. Sesame is joining the list of major food allergens defined in the law as the result of the Food Allergy Safety, Treatment, Education, and Research (FASTER) Act, which was signed into law April 23rd, 2021. Sesame joins eight other major food allergens: milk, eggs, fish, Crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, and soybeans.
They remind consumers that foods already in interstate commerce before 2023, including those on retail shelves, do not need to be removed from the marketplace or relabeled to declare sesame as an allergen. So, depending on shelf life, some food products may not have allergen labeling for sesame on the effective date. Consumers should check with the manufacturer if they are not sure whether a food product contains sesame.