One of the companies I contacted was ConAgra Foods. It's a huge conglomerate of highly popular, highly consumed brands. The list of their brands is too long to include them all, but here are a few:
- Chef Boyardee
- Healthy Choice
- Kid Cuisine
- Van Camp's
- Orville Redenbacher's
- Marie Callender's
I received a response from ConAgra today regarding my inquiry into their labeling policy. Here it is:
Thank you for your request for more information about the ingredients in our products.
We comply with Federal regulations for allergen labeling. These regulations require all major food allergens to be listed in plain language on the ingredient list, and/or be noted in plain language in a 'Contains' statement appearing just after the ingredient list. For consistency, ConAgra Foods always uses the 'Contains' statement. The allergens we list will include any of the eight major food allergens that are used in ConAgra Foods products. The major food allergens as defined by regulation are Crustacean Shellfish, Egg, Fish, Milk, Peanut, Soy, Tree Nuts, and Wheat.
Allergenic ingredients will be listed in the ingredient statement and will be noted in the Contains statement if they are included in flavorings or spice mixes. Please keep in mind that product formulas do change occasionally, so it is important to read the ingredient statement each time you purchase the product.
ConAgra Foods would like to help you with this request to the best of our ability. However, because the information you have requested is considered to be proprietary and a trade secret of ConAgra Foods, we are unable to supply this information.
If you have any allergen concerns outside of the Top 8 Food Allergens, we recommend you do not consume the product and consult your physician.
We appreciate your patronage and value our consumers. We hope you will continue to enjoy our line of quality food.
Proprietary information, trade secret....really??? You can't tell your allergic consumers if the food they are eating is safe?? I understand that ConAgra is a really big company and that their food is probably manufactured in facilities around the world. I also understand that it would take tremendous effort to document every food manufacturered on every line in every one of their facilities and then coordinate their package labeling to reflect their processes (although other manufacturers do). Why not just say that? How is telling a consumer with a peanut allergy that the food they are eating was made with equipment also used to make a product containing peanuts a violation of a trade secret? I feel one of my infamous "soap boxes" coming! Is it possible to boycott this company and not purchase any of their brands? I'm about to find out! Poor Abigail, it was a really big treat for her to be able to have a "fast meal", i.e., Kid Cuisine.
Follow up to Post: I had someone recommend Ian's as an alternative to Kid Cuisine. I went on their website, and they do have a very healthy, nut free kids meal. It doesn't come cheap though.