County urge to check for allergies

Officers at Northumberland County Council are urging residents to check allergy issues before ordering food from restaurants and take-away operators.

The local authority’s appeal comes after a 35-year-old man working in Northumberland last year died after eating a takeaway that it was believed contained peanuts.

Now new national regulations will come into force this year meaning outlets have to tell customers about potential allergens in their food.

Victoria Barrington, head of public protection at the county council, said: “No one should underestimate the impact that an allergy can have.

“Someone who is allergic to peanuts will suffer anaphylactic shock and there may not be enough time to save them.

“Other allergens can have equally dramatic consequences and people who suffer allergies need to make sure that the food they eat is safe.

“Part of that is making sure that they tell the staff and those running restaurants and takeaways about their allergies before any food is provided.

“Similarly, business operators need to make sure that their menus carry clear warnings if products like nut oils are used in their kitchen.

“Warning signs around the service area in takeaways are always a good idea as well.”

For more information on business responsibilities call (01670) 623870.