Natasha's Law in schools
Natasha's Law is a law in the UK that was introduced to improve food safety for customers who suffer from food allergies. The law is named after Natasha Ednan-Laperouse. She was a teenager who died from an allergic reaction after eating a baguette that contained sesame seeds from a branch of Pret a Manger in 2016. Since then, establishments that sell pre-packaged food must provide a full list of ingredients, including allergens, on the packaging.
Many schools have implemented this law to protect their students with severe food allergies. Children with allergies need to be vigilant about what they eat and are therefore at an increased risk of reactions from accidental exposure to allergens. It is crucial for all food served in schools to be labelled accurately with details of any allergens present.
During an Accessibility Audit, we always ask our schools how they manage pupils with severe food allergies. Our main focus here is communication – it is important that pupils/carers/parents have a line of contact to the school and catering company. A lot of schools have commented that they have adopted Natasha’s Law and communicate this on their website.
By adopting Natasha’s Law, schools can ensure that all packaged food and snacks they offer pupils are labelled correctly, providing valuable reassurance to parents and carers.
In addition, many schools have found that labelling foods with allergens helps raise awareness and educate students about the dangers of allergens. It also promotes a culture of inclusion and safety for all pupils, especially those with allergies, and helps to prevent incidents and saves lives.
In conclusion, Natasha's Law is a critical step towards improving food safety for customers with food allergies. Schools and other food providers who implement this effectively can protect students, educate them, and contribute to an inclusive and safe food culture. As we continue to rely on packaged foods, ensuring they are correctly labelled is increasingly important.