BFF-53 UK sandwich chain changes labelling after allergy death

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BRITAIN-FOOD-HEALTH-REGULATION

UK sandwich chain changes labelling after allergy death

LONDON, Oct 3, 2018 (BSS/AFP) – British sandwich shop chain Pret a Manger
said Wednesday it would list all ingredients, including allergens, on its
products after a teenage girl died in 2016 from an allergic reaction.

Natasha Ednan-Laperouse, 15, who suffered from numerous allergies, went
into cardiac arrest on a flight after eating a Pret baguette containing
sesame seeds.

The coroner at her inquest last week said the teen died of anaphylaxis
after eating the sandwich.

Pret said ingredients would be listed for all products that are freshly
made in its shop kitchens. British law does not require food retailers to
list allergen information on packaging or food display cabinets but that is
now under scrutiny.

A spokeswoman for Britain’s food ministry welcomed Pret’s announcement and
said there was a “clear need to review food labelling” following Ednan-
Laperouse’s death.

“That is why we are currently reviewing our approach to give consumers more
information,” she said.

“A critical part is looking very closely at how we can improve and
strengthen domestic regulations to make sure all UK consumers have the
protections required.”

Ednan-Laperouse’s family has called for a change in the law on food
labelling.

In a statement, her parents said they cautiously welcomed Pret’s decision.

“We hope this will quickly lead to improved labelling across all their
stores,” they said.

At the time of Ednan-Laperouse’s death, Pret relied on stickers on food
display units highlighting that allergy information was available by asking
staff or visiting its website.

“I want to say again how deeply sorry we are for the loss of Natasha,”
said Clive Schlee, Pret’s chief executive.

“I said we would learn from this tragedy and ensure meaningful changes
happen.

“I hope these measures set us on course to drive change in the industry so
people with allergies are as protected and informed as possible.”

The chain has more than 500 stores including in Paris, Hong Kong, Dubai and
several US cities.

BSS/AFP/RY/1902 hrs