Peanut Allergen Timebomb in Mushroom Powders and Extracts

QUALITY ASSURANCE | By Michaela Tsangari | 01 July 2019

The Peanut Allergen Timebomb in Mushroom Powders and Extracts

An investigation by Nutraceuticals Group Europe identifies widespread use of alarming production methods to culture mushroom products.

At Nutraceuticals Group Europe we have disclosed a serious quality issue with mushroom powders and extracts, which is little known within the Food and Supplements industry. This safety threat was exposed as a result of Nutraceuticals Group’s Risk Assessment programme, which is used to determine the competency of our new suppliers and products. This programme revealed that peanuts are extensively employed for the growth of mushroom materials from manufacturers. We found that some operations are using peanut shells as a cheap and readily available source for the culture, the growth medium and the compost base for these products. 

Do you know how your mushroom powders are cultivated?Dirty Peanut ShellsIn some instances, we determined that the use of peanuts is due to a lack of understanding of allergenic contamination. More concerningly, however, we believe that some manufacturers are deliberately ignoring the risks of using peanut products and are prioritising economy over safety. It is of great concern that the use of this allergenic timebomb is often not readily communicated by manufacturers to purchasers in the UK and Europe. 

The European Centre for Allergen Research Foundation claims that it has been demonstrated that 0.2 per cent of the entire European population is allergic to peanuts and that in some cases, trace amounts of one milligram can trigger a reaction. In England and Wales during the period 2012-2016, the Office for National Statistics identified that 15 deaths were attributable to food allergies. Thus, the potential risk of this non-disclosure of allergens cannot be underestimated.Reshi Mushroom and Powder

Coming ‘clean’ on nutty mushrooms...

In light of our product investigation, we at Nutraceuticals want to reassure our customers that the powdered mushroom products we supply are free from the allergenic risk posed by peanuts. In a market that is potentially ‘highly contaminated’ with fungi products containing peanut proteins, we are confident that our mushroom powders do not present this deadly risk. 

Our manufacturers are chosen for the superior nutritive quality of the materials that they produce and also for their comprehensive understanding of food safety requirements. This confidence in our sourcing is particularly relevant for our mushroom powders. We ensure that these products are obtained from facilities where the peanut risk is fully comprehended and where production is focused on maintaining a ‘clean’ peanut free status.

Nutraceuticals at the forefront of product testing and Quality Assurance

The minimal awareness of this allergenic risk in mushroom products within the European food and supplement market, means that as a result of our investigation, Nutraceuticals is leading the way in providing safe options for producers and consumers. We believe that we are the only ingredient company in Europe committed to a program of testing for mushroom supplements. We have worked with our approved manufacturers to ensure positive release testing at source. Additionally, we undertake peanut testing for these materials at external UKAS accredited laboratories upon receipt in the UK. As a final safety check prior to release into Nutraceuticals supply chain, the test results are reviewed and approved by the Quality Team.

Our response to this risk is indicative of the ethos at Nutraceuticals Group Europe. We establish partnerships with trusted, high-quality manufacturers and strengthen our product knowledge with research and analysis. Our extensive team of scientific, nutritional and legislative experts then validate these testing initiatives and communicate this knowledge to provide our customers with an unrivalled range of product information. Across our vast product range, we strive to offer the best, safest and most exciting ingredients with the added assurance, advice and support that our customers value and deserve.

Can your supplier of Mushroom Powders provide you with the same product confidence?

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NIGEHER000931 Agaricus Blazei (Royal Sun) Fruiting Body Extract 30% Polysaccharides (Agaricus Blazei) #

NIGEHER009761 Chaga Fermented Mycelium Extract 25% Beta Glucan (Inonotus obliquus) #

NIGEHER009771 Chaga Fermented Mycelium Powder (Inonotus obliquus) #

NIGEHER009775 Chaga Fruiting Body Extract 10% Polysaccharides 1% Triterpene (Inonotus obliquus) #

NIGEHER009778-SAORG Chaga Fruiting Body Powder (Inonotus obliquus) Organic Certified #

NIGEHER009780 Chaga Sclerotium Extract 25% Polysaccharides 5% Polyphenols (Inonotus obliquus) #

NIGEHER011381 Cordyceps Militaris Mushroom Fruiting Body Extract 30% Polysaccharides (Cordyceps militaris) #

NIGEHER011385 Cordyceps Militaris Mushroom Fruiting Body Extract 40% Polysaccharides (Cordyceps militaris) #

NIGEHER011402 Cordyceps Sinensis CS-4 Fermented Mycelium Extract 10:1 (Cordyceps sinensis) #

NIGEHER011401 Cordyceps Sinensis CS-4 Fermented Mycelium Extract 40% Polysaccharides (Cordyceps sinensis) #

NIGEHER011404 Cordyceps Sinensis CS-4 Fermented Mycelium Extract 4:1 (Cordyceps sinensis) #

NIGEHER011405 Cordyceps Sinensis CS-4 Fermented Mycelium Extract 7% Cordyceps Acid (Cordyceps sinensis) #

NIGEHER011412 Cordyceps Sinensis CS-4 Fermented Mycelium Powder (Cordyceps sinensis) #

NIGEHER025225 Lions Mane Fermented Mycelium Extract 10:1 (Hericium erinaceus) #

NIGEHER025222 Lions Mane Fermented Mycelium Extract 30% Polysaccharides (Hericium erinaceus) #

NIGEHER025232 Lions Mane Fermented Mycelium Powder (Hericium erinaceus) #

NIGEHER025215 Lions Mane Mushroom Fruiting Body Extract 10:1 (Hericium erinaceus) #

NIGEHER025221 Lions Mane Mushroom Fruiting Body Extract 30% Polysaccharides (Hericium erinaceus) #

NIGEHER025213 Lions Mane Mushroom Fruiting Body Extract 5:1 (Hericium erinaceus) #

NIGEHER025214 Lions Mane Mushroom Fruiting Body Extract 8:1 (Hericium erinaceus) #

NIGEHER026205 Maitake Fermented Mycelium Extract 10% Polysaccharides (Grifola frondosa) #

NIGEHER026201 Maitake Fermented Mycelium Extract 10:1 (Grifola frondosa) #

NIGEHER026202 Maitake Fermented Mycelium Extract 30% Polysaccharides (Grifola frondosa) #

NIGEHER026200 Maitake Fermented Mycelium Powder (Grifola frondosa) #

NIGEHER026208-SAORG Maitake Fruiting Body Powder (Grifola frondosa) Organic Certified #

NIGEHER033102 Reishi Fermented Mycelium Extract 10% Polysaccharides (Ganoderma lucidum) #

NIGEHER033111 Reishi Fermented Mycelium Extract 10:1 (Ganoderma lucidum) #

NIGEHER033106 Reishi Fermented Mycelium Extract 30% Polysaccharides (Ganoderma lucidum) #

NIGEHER033000 Reishi Fermented Mycelium Powder (Ganoderma lucidum) #

NIGEHER033011 Reishi Mushroom Fruiting Body Extract 15:1 (Ganoderma lucidum) #

NIGEHER033001 Reishi Mushroom Fruiting Body Extract 4:1 (Ganoderma lucidum) #

NIGEHER033121-SAORG Reishi Mushroom Fruiting Body Powder (Ganoderma lucidum) Organic Certified #

NIGEHER033101 Reishi Mushroom Fruiting Body Powder 30% Polysaccharides (Ganoderma lucidum) #

NIGEHER036003 Shitake Fermented Mycelium Extract 30% Polysaccharides (Lentinus edodes) #

NIGEHER036001 Shitake Fermented Mycelium Extract 8:1 (Lentinus edodes) #

NIGEHER036002 Shitake Fermented Mycelium Powder (Lentinus edodes) #

NIGEHER037581 Tremella Fuciformis Mycelium Extract 20% Polysaccharides (Tremella fuciformis) #

NIGEHER042011 Zhu Ling Polyporus Mushroom Fruiting Body Extract (Polyporus umbellatus sclerotium) #


Michaela Tsangari 01 Jul 2019