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Table 8 Customer demand for information about specific allergens

From: Comparing the eating out experiences of consumers seeking to avoid different food allergens

1) … out of interest what are the sort of allergies and intolerances that you hear more of, most of? Gluten, nuts and seafood. Okay right and very often? No, not often at all actually. Like a lot, gluten more than anything... Nuts maybe four or five times in a year, yeah not often at all. I don’t know whether it’s not that common, or people just don’t mention it and seafood maybe once or twice a year to be fair, not often at all.’ (A59, FA: Peanuts, Tree nuts)
2) ‘… I think there aren’t enough people who are lactose intolerant for companies to see it as viable. Or enough people to make a fuss. So I’m part of the problem I think. There aren’t enough people making a fuss about it because of people not wanting to make it a big thing so companies don’t have to make a big deal about it, but if everyone who had slight lactose intolerance… pushed in restaurants I think there would be a bigger appeal for it. We are part of the problem.’ (A51, FI: Milk)
3) ‘Well, if everywhere could do soya milk that would be excellent, or start having optional lactose or dairy free cheese as options rather than having to not have anything that’s a milk product but I don’t know if there’s an economic imperative for shops. If there’d be enough customers who would be interested in that, there might be. There might be plenty of people who are just avoiding these things who would buy them if they knew that they could have nachos with lactose free cheddar, then they would but I suppose until they try that they don’t know.’ (A10, FI: Milk)
4) ‘Nut allergies I think prevail a lot. I think they are aware of nut allergies… I don’t think they think anything else is… it’s a killer, do you know what I mean? But I’m not going to die eating a sandwich, but I can be in pain for hours and it can have a massive effect, because you can’t do anything.’ (A34, FI: Gluten, Milk)
5) ‘… it’s not life threatening like if I had nut [allergy] or anything like that. So, I just know that night I’m going to suffer… I think if I was nut intolerant I would be very… but because it’s not life threatening I think I tend to put up with it and think “I won’t have that again”.’ (A45, FA: Milk)