Lupine allergy: less familiar but just as dangerous

One of the 14 most important allergens is Lupine. This allergen is generally less known, but because it is reasonably cheap and contains many good fatty acids and proteins, it is increasingly used in the food industry. Lupine contains high-quality proteins with all amino acids a person needs. These amino acids can also be found in meat, making lupine increasingly popular as a meat substitute. It also contains healthy dietary fibre.

Lupine is also called "bean flour" and is family to legumes. This includes:

  • Bread, confectionary and pastry
  • Breaded (panned) products
  • Sauces, dressings and soups
  • Snacks, candy and chocolate
  • Vegetarian meat substitutes, cold meats

Lupine allergy is estimated to affect 40% of people with peanut allergy, as this may have a cross allergy with lupine. But there also may be cross allergies with other legumes. There are no good estimate of how many people are allergic to lupine, but hypersensitivity to the allergen is likely to occur more and more often. Complaints that may occur in an allergic reaction include: acute asthma, congested throat, anaphylactic shock, skin complaints, itching in the mouth, nematode and oedema (swelling due to moisture accumulation).

How is lupine indicated?

In general, lupine is easy to recognize, but they’re some exceptions. Various ways in which the presence of lupine is indicated are: protein concentrate, lopino, loyu, lupini/tremocos, lupine, lupine bean, lupine flour, lupine pieces, lupine seed, okara or dietary fiber. When cooking for a guest with lupine allergy, it is important to recognize the presence in products. Examples of products that (possibly) contain lupine are: pastries and cakes, waffles, pancakes, pasta products, pizzas and vegetarian meat substitutes.

Allergen information

The law states that in any environment where non-prepacked foods are offered for sale, you must clearly and visibly state relevant allergen information. The information may be communicated in writing or electronically. For more information, click here.

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