Trying to eat out in a restaurant safely when you have food allergies is tricky. A survey of people with food allergies found that one in three had a reaction in a restaurant. CDC researchers from several states decided to understand more about manager, food worker, and server knowledge and attitudes about food allergies.
By learning more, we know what can be changed to make eating out safer for those with food allergies.
What did the study find?
The study found that managers and staff were generally knowledgeable about food allergies. They had positive attitudes about accommodating customers with food allergies.
However, some staff:
- Incorrectly believed that people with food allergies could safely eat a small amount of their food allergen
- Thought that their restaurant might not be able to respond to a food allergy emergency
Did the researchers make recommendations?
The CDC survey suggests that restaurants put in place three practices linked with better food allergy knowledge and more positive attitudes about serving customers with food allergies:
- Having a plan for answering questions from customers with food allergies
- Choosing a specific person in the restaurant to handle food allergy questions and requests
- Training staff on food allergies