New research reveals challenges facing young people with food allergies and intolerances

18 September 2018

Article: 52/3705

A survey investigating the views of young people living with food allergies and/or intolerances has been conducted by the Food Standards Agency (FSA), in partnership with Allergy UK (AUK) and Anaphylaxis Campaign (AC). The report is based on responses from 2,599 young people, aged from 16 to 24 years old, in the UK.

Key findings of the report include:

  • over half of young people with a food allergy or intolerance have avoided eating out in the last six months due to their condition 
  • 67% of respondents reported being aware of the legal requirement of food businesses to provide information on the top 14 allergens, but only 14% felt extremely confident asking for allergen information when dining out and 14% reported feeling not at all confident 
  • 59% reported they tend to visit the same places when eating out 
  • 55% reported always researched the menu online before going to a new or unfamiliar place 
  • only 9% reported always contacting a restaurant in advance to check they provide allergen information

The FSA, AUK and AC are working together to launch ‘easy to ASK’, a campaign designed to empower young people to ask food businesses about allergens when eating out, so that they can make safe choices. ‘Easy to ASK’ is also a reminder to businesses to be clear and up-front about the provision of accurate allergen information. The campaign includes the simple mnemonic: 

  • Always ask about allergies 
  • Speak up
  • Keep safe

The report is available to view on the FSA website.

Source: FSA, 11 September 2018.