Food allergy warning for businesses and revellers over Christmas


People and businesses in Staffordshire are being reminded of the importance of clear allergen and ingredient information over the Christmas and New Year period.

With pubs, restaurants and takeaways gearing up for the festive season, Staffordshire County Council’s Trading Standards service is urging people who have food allergies or intolerances to check that food ordered does not contain an ingredient which would harm them.

Anyone eating in a restaurant, bar or takeaway has the right to receive allergen information either in written format or verbally. This should include the name of the food and a full list of ingredients, with any of the 14 major allergens emphasised in the list.

The reminder follows new rules, also known as Natasha’s Law, introduced earlier this year, which now requires businesses to label all food known as pre-packed for direct sale. With some supply chain issues affecting multiple business sectors, it may also be that ingredients or products previously used are being substituted. It’s therefore essential to ensure allergen information is up to date and readily available.

Victoria Wilson, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Trading Standards at Staffordshire County Council said: “With work nights out and family meals planned for over the festive period, we’re taking the opportunity to remind both businesses and the public of the risks of food allergies.

“This has become a serious issue in recent years and for businesses, they need to make sure they provide clear allergen information on all their foods. And for anyone with a serious food allergy, they should make this known to food business staff.

“Trading Standards job is to help keep people safe and if anyone chooses a food outlet and are in any doubt about what’s in their food, they should look at dining elsewhere.”

People can find out more information by visiting the Allergy UK website at https://www.allergyuk.org/.

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