The 10 most common food allergens in Australia

90 % of allergic reactions are caused by the top 10 food listed below:

Australia has one of the highest food allergy rates in the world. 2% of Adults in Australia currently have a food allergy and 1 in 10 babies will develo a food intollerance. As a result, it’s likely that you know someone with a food allergy or dietary requirement.

Foodini is a new app that helps people with food allergies and dietary restrictions find the restaurant and menu items most suitable for them. We’ve outlined the 10 most common food allergies below, Foodini caters for all of these and many more!


Wheat is the most common allergen and is often found in bread, pasta and cereal. A wheat allergy is different from coeliac disease which is related to gluten (a protein found in wheat) although the two are often confused for each other.


It may surprise you that Peanuts are actually legumes and not nuts! This is the second most common allergen and can have very severe symptoms. This has led to the many schools banning peanuts and “may contain” products to reduce the risk.

Tree Nuts

Tree nuts include Brazil nuts, cashews, hazelnuts, pecans, almonds, walnuts, pistachios and chestnuts. You may not think these are common ingredients but due to cross contamination during food manufacturing there are many products that are labelled “may contain traces of nuts”. Therefore it can be difficult for those with a nut allergy to ensure they’re not consuming any.


Shellfish refers to aquatic shelled animals like molluscs (e.g. cockles, octopus, squid, oysters) and crustaceans (e.g. prawns, shrimp, crayfish, crab). These are common ingredients as flavourings as well as in Asian soups, sauces and stocks.


Eggs are one of the most common ingredients and are used in a wide range of recipes and products. However they are a common allergy, especially in young children. The egg white and the egg yolk can both cause a severe allergic reaction so it’s important that consumers are properly aware if they are used in the cooking process.


Milk is the highest cause of food allergy in infants and one of the most common worldwide. This is different from lactose intolerance which is also pretty common. An allergy is caused by an immune system reaction to milk proteins whereas lactose intolerance comes from the body not having the enzyme lactase. This enzyme is required to break down the lactose which is present in dairy milk.


Fish allergies are generally allergies to finned fish. The main fish that people are allergic to are salmon, tuna and halibut. Fish is often an ingredient in stocks, dressing and sauces and there is a high risk of cross contamination in the production of other food products.


Soy allergies are most commonly found in young children, although the sensitivity to soy appears to increase with age. A soy allergy refers to soybeans which are part of the legume family. The amount that soybeans are processed has led to many different names for soy products such as bean curd, tempeh and tofu. These are often found in Asian diets but are increasingly common in the Western diet.


A sesame allergy refers to an allergy to sesame seeds. This is often a lifelong allergy which can be difficult to manage as food labels don’t often specify they may contain sesame. Sesame seeds are used in a wide range of products, such as bread, sauces, biscuits and cereals making it hard to avoid if you have an allergy.


This is the allergen which you may not have heard of. Lupin is a legume which is more commonly consumed and used in the Mediterranean, often in the form of lupin flour. If you have a peanut allergy then you are likely to also have a lupin allergy as there is a high risk of cross-reactivity between the two allergens.

Did any of the top 10 allergies surprise you? Foodini aims to help people with these allergies and many others to eat out safely and comfortably. Let us know your thoughts below?






Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *