New label requirements make allergy info clearer

New requirements will make it easier for people to find information about common allergies on food labels.

New Zealand Food Safety deputy director-general Vincent Arbuckle said changes were good news for people with food allergies.

"For the up to 8% of New Zealanders who have food allergies the consequences of eating the wrong food can be serious, from swelling, hives and vomiting to anaphylaxis."

All food packaged and labelled after last Sunday must declare allergens or provide statements about the contents where appropriate.

Under the changes, potentially life-threatening common allergens must be listed in bold in the ingredients list and summarised in a "contains" statement on the label.

Food at cafes or restaurants including takeaways must have information about allergens available on the menu or on request.