A Sutton mum says she is looking forward to eating out again with her family now a new EU law has come into force which requires shops and restaurants to give details of allergens in food.
Natalie Fleet’s one year-old daughter, Lottie, is allergic to milk and soya, with exposure leaving her in extreme pain, with sickness and head-swelling.
Her sensitivity to the foodgroups has meant painstaking analysis of labelling when shopping and even led to mum Natalie (30) removing both from her own diet while breast-feeding.
Said Natalie: “When she has a bad reaction she is screaming in pain.
“It was very difficult because I had no idea how many foods had milk - and those without milk probably had soya.
“Even some medicines are not properly labelled, so sometimes it was a case of watching her very carefully after she had been given something.”
Lottie’s condition originally went undetected by health professionals but Natalie was able to diagnose it by researching her symptoms on Google.
Under the new rules restaurants and takeaways will have to inform their customers about 14 specific allergens, ranging from nuts and milk, to less widely recognised allergens including mustard and lupin seeds, which are often used in flour.
The EU Food Information for Consumers Regulations will also change the way allergy information appears on labelling for pre-packed foods bought in shops and supermarkets.
Said Natalie: “I really welcome this - it will make a big difference to us.
“Eating out is a risk we have not been able to take. But now, hopefully, this is something we will be able to do all together.”