Archive for February, 2012

Food Allergy Advice For Cake Decorators – update 22/02/2012

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012

I have decided to update my original post of the same name as it is still very popular and a lot of the information it provided has now changed. 

I have been making celebration cakes for people on special diets for as long as I have been making cakes and have spent a lot of time making sure the ingredients are safe to use for individual diets. I constantly check to see if the ingredients have changed or new products come on the market.

As a cake decorator are you are being asked more frequently if you can make cakes for special diets?
Do you get confused with ingredient lists?

I have put together a list of the common icings and sugarcraft ingredients used in the UK and allergy advice on each.

There are hidden ingredients that you may not think about. The main ingredient that causes confusion is Glucose syrup. This ingredient is found in most sugarcraft products.

Glucose can be made from any kind of starch and is used in sugary foods to soften texture and prevent crystallisation of sugars.

Most of the world seems to make glucose syrup from corn and call it corn syrup rather than glucose syrup. In Europe glucose syrup is made with corn and wheat.

If you buy your ingredients from a catering wholesaler there is a good chance the glucose in the product will be made from wheat, – this includes glace cherries and mixed peel.

To be sure what is in a product ask your supplier for the food specifications. This is a printed sheet which gives a description of a product, packaging info, shelf life, origin, ingredients and their derivatives  and any allergy information.

You may be wondering ‘what is the problem with glucose?

Glucose syrup is gluten-free. It can be derived from wheat but the production methods make it safe for people with coeliac disease to eat.

Research on whether wheat derived glucose syrup is safe for a person with a wheat or gluten allergy or intolerance strongly suggests that it should be fine for them to eat. I follow this advice but everyone’s tolerance and reactions are different. Some people with a wheat allergy or intolerance say it does affect them and even some Coeliacs too. If I have a customer who can’t eat wheat, I will ask them if glucose syrup or maltodextrin affects them personally.

Manufacturers do not have to state where the glucose syrup in their products derives from so you will have to contact them to get this information.

The following legislation applies to cake decorators selling cakes directly to the consumer.

Since November 2011 EU law now states that food whether prepackaged or sold loose has to provide information if it contains any of the following allergens or ingredients derived from the following allergens

Peanuts and products thereof – found in sauces, cakes, desserts, groundnut oil, peanut flour.

Nuts and products thereof, namely; almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, cashews, pecan nuts, Brazil nuts, pistachio nuts, macadamia nuts, except for nuts used for making alcoholic distillates including ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin
– found in sauces, desserts, crackers, bread, ice cream, marzipan, ground almonds, nut oils.

Soybeans and products thereof,
except:

(a) fully refined soybean oil and fat ( 1 );

(b) natural mixed tocopherols (E306), natural D-alpha tocopherol, natural D-alpha tocopherol acetate, and natural D-alpha tocopherol succinate from soybean sources;

(c) vegetable oils derived phytosterols and phytosterol esters from soybean sources;

(d) plant stanol ester produced from vegetable oil sterols from soybean sources;

Soya can be found in tofu or beancurd, soya flour and textured soya protein, some ice creams, yogurts, sauces, desserts, meat products, vegetarian products, ready made meals, margarines, lecithin.

Mustard and products thereof – Including liquid mustard, mustard powder and mustard seeds, in salad dressings, marinades, soups, sauces, curries, meat products.

Lupin and products thereof – lupin seeds and flour found in some types of bread and pastries.

Eggs and products thereof – found in cakes, mousses, sauces, pasta, quiche, some meat products, mayonnaise, foods brushed with egg.

Fish and products thereof,
except:
a)fish gelatine used as a carrier for vitamin or carotenoid preparations;
b) fish gelatine or isinglass used as fining agent in beer and wine

– found in some salad dressings, pizzas, relishes, fish sauce and some soy and Worcestershire sauces.

Crustaceans and products thereof
– shrimps, prawns, , scampi, crab, shrimp paste, crayfish, lobster

Cereals containing gluten, namely: wheat, rye, barley, oats, spelt, Kamut,or their hybridised strains, and products thereof,
except
a) wheat based glucose syrups including dextrose
b) wheat based maltodextrins
c) glucose syrup based on barley
d) cereals used for making alcohol distillates including ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin
– found in cereals such as wheat, rye and barley and foods containing flour, such as bread, pasta, cakes, pastry, meat products, sauces, soups, batter, stock cubes, breadcrumbs, food dusted with flour. Most oats are also contaminated with gluten containing cereals in the milling process.

Sesame seeds and products thereof
 – found in bread, breadsticks, tahini, houmous, sesame oil.

Celery and products thereof
 – including celery stalks, leaves and seeds and celeriac, in salads, soups, celery salt, some meat products.

Sulphur dioxide and sulphites at concentrations of more than 10mg/kg or 10mg/litre in terms of the total SO2 which are to be calculated for products as proposed ready for consumption or as reconstituted according to the instructions of the manufacturers
– found in meat products, fruit juice drinks, dried fruit and vegetables, wine, beer.

Milk and products thereof
except
a) whey used for making alcoholic distillates including ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin
b) lactitol

 – including milk products. Cream, butter, cheese, yogurt. Found in many ready made foods.

Molluscs and products thereof – abalone, clams, mussels, octopus, oysters, squid and scallops.

Also if you are still using one or more of six food colourings being voluntarily phased out, you must include a warning on products. In addition to the standard required information,

labels must also have a warning using the following wording: ‘the name or E number of the colour(s)’ may have an adverse effect on activity and attention in children’. The colours are:

  • sunset yellow (E 110)
  • quinoline yellow (E 104)
  • carmoisine (E 122)
  • allura red (E 129)
  • tartrazine (E 102)
  • ponceau 4R (E 124)

From January 2012 food producers cannot label their food as gluten free unless it has been tested for the gluten levels. It now has to be labelled with – No gluten containing ingredients. See this link for further information:

www.icedgembakes.co.uk/special-diet-blog/hints-and-tips/new-gluten-free-food-labelling-for-caterers

Take a look at the list below for a one-stop guide to popular sugarcraft products and their allergens. If you want to add any brands I’ve missed or let me know of any changes, please do get in touch.

Product ingredients and their derivatives can change from batch to batch so always check the label. 

Key:
v = vegan / does not include any animal ingredients including eggs, dairy, gelatine or honey.
df = dairy / lactose free
nf = nut free
gf = gluten free
ef = egg free

Sugarpaste / Rolled Fondant

Vegan / vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free Other info
Renshaws sready to roll icing Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Made in a factory that handles nuts glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Dr Oetker Regal-Ice Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free May contain nuts  Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Pettinice vegetarian Gluten Free Contains dairy Egg Free Nut Free  Egg and gluten in the same factory
Covapaste Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Silverspoon Ready To Roll Icing Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free may contain traces of egg May contain traces of nuts Glucose derives from wheat or corn but does not contain gluten
M & B Sugarpaste Vegan Gluten free Dairy free Egg free Nut free Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Satinice vegetarian Gluten free Dairy free contains egg Nut free  completely free of wheat and corn products

 

Marzipan – Almond paste

Vegan / vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free Other info
Squires Kitchen Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg free Contains nuts Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Odense Vegan Contains gluten Dairy Free Egg free Contains nuts
Ingram Brothers vegetarian Contains gluten Contains dairy Egg free Contains nuts
Dr Oetker Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg free Contains nuts Glucose from wheat or corn but does not contain gluten
Silverspoon Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg free Contains nuts Glucose from wheat or corn but does not contain gluten
Sainsburys Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg free Contains nuts Glucose from wheat or corn but does not contain gluten
Waitrose Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg free Contains nuts Glucose from wheat or corn but does not contain gluten
Asda Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg free Contains nuts Glucose from wheat or corn but does not contain gluten
Tesco Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg free Contains nuts Glucose from wheat or corn but does not contain gluten

 

Flower paste (gum paste)

Vegan / vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free Other info
Squires Kitchen
Flower paste
vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Contains egg May contain traces Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Sugar City Platinum Paste Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free
Sugar City Diamond Paste Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free

 

Mexican / modelling paste

Vegan / vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free Other info
Squires Kitchen Mexican Paste vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Contains egg May contain traces of nut Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Squires Kitchen Instant Mix Mexican Paste Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free May contain traces of egg May contain traces of nut Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Squires Kitchen Sugar Dough Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free May contain traces of egg May contain traces of nut Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Squires Kitchen Pastillage Vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Contains egg May contain traces of nut  Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Sugar City Mexican Paste Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg free Nut free
Sugar City Modelling Paste Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg free Nut free

 

Fondant/ Poured Fondant

Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free Other info
Squires Kitchen Fondant Icing Mix Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free  Egg Free  May contain traces of nut
Tate & Lyle Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free
Silver Spoon Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free May contain egg Nut Free
Almondart block fondant Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free egg free Nut Free

 

 

Chocolate Paste

Vegan / vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free Other info
Squires Kitchen dark chocolate Cocoform vegetarian Gluten Free May contain traces of milk May contain traces of egg May contain traces of nut Contains soya, glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Squires Kitchen milk chocolate Cocoform vegetarian Gluten Free Contains milk May contain traces of egg May contain traces of nut Contains soya, glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Squires Kitchen white, green and red chocolate Cocoforms vegetarian Gluten Free Contains milk May contain traces of egg May contain traces of nut Contains soya, glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Squires Kitchen flavoured cocoforms (English mint, Brazillian orange, cappuccino and strawberry) Vegetarian except strawberry Gluten Free Contains milk May contain traces of egg May contain traces of nut Contains soya, glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Regalice luxury white chocolate Sugarpaste vegetarian Gluten Free Contains milk Egg free May contain traces of nut Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Regalice luxury chocolate Sugarpaste vegetarian Gluten Free Contains milk Egg free May contain traces of nut Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Tracey Mann dark chocolate paste vegetarian Gluten Free May contain traces of milk Egg free May contain traces of nut Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten

 

Dried egg white

Vegan / vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free Other info
Squires Kitchen pure albumin vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Contains egg May contain traces of nut
Dr Oetker egg white powder vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Contains egg Nut free
Meri-White vegetarian Contains gluten from wheat made in a factory that handles dairy Contains egg Contains wheat

 

Royal Icing Mix

Vegan / vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free Other info
Squires Kitchen vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Contains egg May contain traces of nut
Tate & Lyle vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Contains egg Nut free

 

Supermarkets now stock Dr Oetker writing icing which does not contain any of the allergens and is handy for piping a simple message or decoration. Always check the label as ingredients change all the time. Alternatively, use watered down sugarpaste, which works well piped from a piping tube. Water down with pre-boiled water to prevent bacterial growth.

Food colouring

Vegan / vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free Other info
Squires Kitchen Powder colours Vegan Gluten Free Dairy free May contain traces of egg May contain traces of nut
Squires Kitchen paste colours Vegan Gluten Free Dairy free May contain traces of egg May contain traces of nut Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Sugarflair powder colours Vegan Gluten Free Dairy free Egg Free Nut free
Sugarflair paste colours Vegan Gluten Free Dairy free Egg Free Nut free
Sugarflair liquid colours Vegan Gluten Free Dairy free Egg Free Nut free
Orchard cake tools powder colour vegetarian Gluten Free Contains dairy Egg Free  contains lactose and cornflour

 

Glucose Syrup

Vegan / vegetarian Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free Other info
Squires Kitchen glucose syrup Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free May contain traces of egg May contain traces of nut Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Dr Oetker’s glucose syrup Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free  Glucose derives from wheat but does not contain gluten
Silver Spoon’s glucose syrup Vegan Gluten Free Dairy Free Egg Free Nut Free Glucose made from wheat or corn but does not contain gluten