Edible Insect Food Allergy Survey - Closing date 9 February 2024
Healthcare workers are invited to participate in a short survey (~5 minutes) on reporting cases of edible insect food allergy after consumption of insect-based food products such as crickets, mealworms. green ants and witchetty grubs (native to Australia). This survey is being conducted by researchers from James Cook University and the University of Sydney who are affiliated with ASCIA, Centre for Food and Allergy Research (CFAR), and the National Allergy Centre of Excellence (NACE).
The survey link is https://jcu.syd1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_20rS7COSt5qfs8K and the closing date is 9 February 2024.
The purpose of this survey is to:
- Identify case reports of food allergy to edible insect-based food products and supplements that are gaining popularity as a novel and sustainable source of protein, and are currently being sold as an alternative source of proteins for human consumption in mainstream grocery stores.
- Determine the prevalence of edible insect consumption in the population and the incidence of allergic hypersensitivity upon the ingestion of or exposure to edible insect food products.
Why is collecting this information important?
- Edible insect-based food products and protein supplements are increasingly introduced as an alternative sustainable novel food source to address the global need to feed the growing population.
- However, food safety is of major concern due to the high similarity of conserved proteins with shellfish and house dust mites. Case reports of clinical cross-reactivity have been documented in America, Asia and Europe which identifies that edible insects can be harmful to those suffering from shellfish allergy.
- Currently, there is little research and evidence on the prevalence of edible insect food allergy in Australia. The prevalence and incidence of edible insect food allergy in Australia will provide evidence of the significance of this type of food allergy among the Australian population and initiate research to improve diagnostic accuracy and develop management protocols for the affected Australian population.
This survey will take approximately 5 minutes to complete with the option to save and return to it within 14 days. Each question in the survey requires a response. Please use one questionnaire for each patient/client.
Participation in the survey is voluntary and your responses will be securely stored by Qualtrics and only accessed by approved researchers from James Cook University, University of Sydney and employees of ASCIA. Any identifiable information received will not be stored with your responses. If you have any questions about the survey, please contact Shay Karnaneedi (Food Allergy Researcher at James Cook University) at:
This news item was issued on 7 December 2023 by Jill Smith, CEO of ASCIA, the peak professional body of clinical immunology/allergy specialists in Australia and New Zealand.