The duo addressed delegates at the HCA Forum (30-31 March 2022) to highlight the importance of training and maintaining vigilance around allergen control. They believe that with the right funding and support research could actually eliminate the problem within 20 years ‘if we fully commit to it’.
They set up the Natasha Allergy Research Foundation (NARF) in honour of their daughter to educate and raise awareness of allergies. NARF also funds research in universities and hospitals to support policies and law changes on allergen protection.
Nadim said: “We’ve been told by families of being offered inappropriate food. It should not be left to patients and parents to find their way around not have the right food available. Hospital kitchen training is so important, everyone must adapt to the new allergy reality because mistakes can happen at any point on the journey and information problems can lead to the wrong food being offered.
“Hospitals are doing a lot to tackle this, but I need to remind you that allergies are not a lifestyle choice. It’s not acceptable that in this day and age parents have to bury their children because we don’t take this issue seriously enough.
“Accommodating people with allergies in hospital might seem daunting, but it is achievable. Remove ingredients you don’t need, cut the number back, revisit recipes. I know the supply chain can be difficult, but the food supplier has 100% responsibility to know all the ingredients in the products they sell. You need to be on the front foot.”
Public Sector Catering thanks the HCA for sharing the video presentation with the industry. Allergen management is something all public sector caterers should be implementing and the inspirational video presentation highlights the importance of getting allergen management correct.
A copy of their PowerPoint presentation can be viewed here.