The trend towards allergen-free restaurant meals is welcomed by many people with severe food allergies. But can you trust that dining in a restaurant is truly safe? Every year there are dozens of stories of people who were reassured that the meal they were served was allergen-free, only to end up in the hospital because of an allergic reaction.
While offering allergy-friendly meals is a good business practice, it also increases restaurants’ potential liability. According toRestaurant News,specialized insurance is now available to cover restaurants that mistakenly serve food containing allergens. The allergen-free trend appears to have spurred demand for restaurant liability insurance. According to Insureon, an online agent for small business insurance, this type of insurance will protect the restaurant from lawsuits arising when customers have a bad reaction to their food.
Serving Allergen-Free Fare Increases Risk
Any restaurant could face a lawsuit from a customer who alleges that their allergic reaction or food poisoning was caused by eating there. However, those promising allergen-free menu items face an even greater risk of lawsuits. Because there are few standards to guarantee a truly allergen-free dining experience, some restaurants may mistakenly promise allergen-free items that have been tainted through cross-contamination.
Do you feel safe ordering allergen-friendly foods in restaurants?