Friday 1 October 2021 saw significant progress in the UK food industry for those with allergies – The UK Food Information Amendment, also known as Natasha’s Law, was enforced. This means that from now on, all food retailers are required – by law – to provide a full list of ingredients and allergens on prepacked food or food prepared and directly sold on site. This affects all food businesses in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
What is Natasha’s Law?
Behind the new legislation is the story of a 15-year old girl, Natasha Ednan-Laperouse, who tragically died due to a severe allergic reaction during a flight from London to Nice in 2016. She had purchased a baguette from a coffee shop in Heathrow Airport, not knowing it contained sesame seeds to which she was extremely allergic. Until recently, the law had a loophole that allowed poor labelling, tragically causing the death of Natasha who suffered several cardiac arrests during her flight. After losing their daughter, Tanya and Nadim Ednan-Laperouse decided to campaign for new legislation to prevent anyone else from meeting the same fate as Natasha.
Natasha’s Law will now protect millions of people in the UK who have food allergies and worry for their health when eating. According to Natasha’s parents, the new law will increase transparency about what people are eating and give them the confidence to buy food items that are prepacked, without having to gamble with their life.
How does Natasha’s Law affect Healthy Nibbles?
For Healthy Nibbles, Natasha’s Law means continuing and improving the work we have done for a long time. In fact, our products have always listed nutrition and allergen information; either within the snack boxes or through information being displayed prior to purchase via our vending machine touchscreen. Last month we introduced a new ‘14 allergen safe’ search function to our vending machines. The 14 allergens are:
- Cereals containing gluten
- Sulphur dioxide and sulphites
- Tree nuts
When ordering our customers can pick what is safe for them to eat through the use of the touchscreen search function. Healthy Nibbles also has tested Product Recall protocols – if contamination was ever discovered, we have the capacity to shut down every single vending machine in the UK within 10 seconds.
When it comes to Healthy Nibbles snack boxes, our customers are able to look at the ingredients list on the package prior to opening. In the future, they can also find the ingredients, nutrition and allergen information on our website, under each snack box section as transparency has always been one our key values and something we won’t negotiate.