How Can Restaurants Accommodate Patrons with Food Allergies?

Posted on: July 14, 2021 by RMS Hospitality

Food allergies and sensitivities have become both more common and better understood in recent years. If a restaurant patron unknowingly consumes a dish that contains an allergen, they can experience an allergic reaction. These range from mild and simply uncomfortable, to severe and life-threatening that require immediate intervention.

Your clients can provide a better experience for their guests by implementing some simple safety measures. These will keep guests safe so they can relax and have an enjoyable dining experience.

Understand the Need to Be Accommodating

Dining out can be a scary experience for those that have a severe food allergy. They need to trust their health to the chef and servers that prepare and handle their food. It’s essential that customers’ needs and concerns are always taken seriously.

Having a good restaurant insurance program in place to cover any potential liabilities is an excellent and necessary step as well. Misunderstandings and accidents happen, and your clients need to have adequate protection.

Train Your Employees

So, how do restaurants handle food allergies? An important part is to train employees. All staff should know the top allergen foods, such as shellfish, nuts, dairy, and wheat. They need to be familiar with the menu so they can answer specific questions about the ingredients used in a dish.

It’s also useful for a food-service business to train its employees on how to recognize the common symptoms of an allergic reaction and how to handle it. This way they can step in and save valuable time by acting immediately.

Prevent Cross-Contamination

One of the most important parts of food safety for patrons with allergens is preparation. High allergen foods need separate preparation stations away from the rest of the ingredients to prevent cross-contamination. Wash all utensils and cooking implements after each use. The workers themselves need to wash their hands or change gloves after handling a certain ingredient. Even using the wrong fryer to cook a gluten-free dish can trigger a reaction in some people.

Offer a Varied and Transparent Menu

A restaurant that wants to offer excellent service will include dishes on their menu that are safe for those that have food allergies and sensitivities. Your clients can also opt to offer substitutions to patrons. If they adopt this policy, they need to inform the guest of any contamination risk and inform the kitchen of the need to be safe.

Advise your clients to clearly mark all menu items if they contain a common allergen. This is a good practice for both the guests and the restaurants. Prior knowledge and written warnings can come into play with a liability case for the restaurant insurance program.

With the proper food safety measures in place, restaurant patrons can enjoy their meals without worry. Establishments that build a reputation on being accommodating, kind, and understanding, can expect glowing reviews and repeat business from loyal diners.

About RMS Hospitality Group

At RMS Hospitality Group, our expertly crafted policies are written specifically for the hospitality industry. We offer custom tailored solutions to meet any venue’s specific needs. For more information, contact our knowledgeable experts today at (888) 359-8390.

Posted in: Restaurant Insurance

COVID-19 Update:

At RMS and associated firms, business continues as usual. Our staff is remote-capable and available to handle all partners, brokers, and insureds at the present time. Contact us today!