Following the tragic death of Natasha Ednan-Laperouse, the 15-year-old who died after suffering an allergic reaction to a Pret a Manger baguette, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs will be bringing a new law to strengthen allergen labelling rules.
The new legislation will require all pre-packed food to include a full list of all the ingredients within the product – in order to give sufferers trust in the food they buy.
Currently under the law, food that is prepared on premises which it is sold in – such as sandwiches and salads – doesn’t require allergen information on the packaging.
Supermarket sandwiches must include a list of all the ingredients including allergens but, stores that sell pre-prepared sandwiches – if made on the premises – only need a sign nearby prompting customers to ask about allergens.
Natasha collapsed after eating an artichoke, olive and tapenade baguette that contained sesame, to which she was allergic. Natasha’s parents said she died ‘’of inadequate food labelling laws’’ and called for a change in the law.
The new law will tighten the rules and require businesses to include the full ingredients labelling on pre-packaged foods. The new legislation will be applied to England and Northern Ireland by the summer of 2021 and businesses will be given a two-year implementation period.
The law will be called ‘Natasha’s Law’ and it will protect people with food allergies by making food labels clear and consistent. There are two million food allergy sufferers in the UK that need to feel safe and confident when making food choices.
Natasha Ednan-Laperouse’s parents Tanya and Nadim said: “While Natasha’s Law comes too late to save our beloved daughter, we believe that helping save other allergy sufferers and their families from the enduring agony that we will always bear is a fitting legacy for her life.”
Can I claim compensation for a food allergic reaction?
Under the Food Information Regulations Act, every food vendor has to list any potential allergen content in order to make sure that all UK citizens feel safe. In most cases the food allergies are minor, but they can still be valid for compensation if caused by negligence.
Failure to comply with the act or causing harm to a customer due to them suffering an allergic reaction would be considered valid for making a compensation claim. The retailer or food manufactures is responsible for making customers aware of the ingredients in the food they are selling.
If you believe you have had an allergic reaction due to negligence and need some advice please contact us to speak to one of our experienced solicitors.