Anaphylaxis campaign founder receives award

David Reading, who founded the Anaphylaxis Campaign in 1994 after his daughter died of an allergic reaction to peanuts, was the recipient of the inaugural Dorothy Cullinane Award at the recent Society of Food Hygiene & Technology (SOFHT) luncheon.

The new award, in memory of Dorothy Cullinane, the highly regarded expert in food labelling and particularly food allergies who died in May 2014, is for those who have made an outstanding contribution in the field of food intolerances.

A former journalist, Reading founded the pressure group the Anaphylaxis Campaign as a result of his daughter’s death traced back to a nut garnish on a lemon meringue pie. The group soon received communication from many people also suffering from allergies, not just from nuts but from eggs, milk, shellfish and sesame among others, and realised that they had unhidden a medical crisis and set about raising awareness of food allergies and in particular, anaphylactic shock to the food industry and campaigning for better labelling and information.

Today, the Anaphylaxis Campaign is the only UK wide charity operating solely for the growing numbers of people at risk from severe allergic reactions including anaphylaxis. The organisation provides support to individuals and their families as well as health professionals and the food industry.

Alan Lacey, chair of SOFHT, comments, “There have been huge developments in the areas of food allergy awareness in the last 20 years which have seen it move from the fringes to the mainstream, in no small part due to the effectiveness of the Anaphylaxis Campaign. David Reading knew that there needed to be answers to his daughter’s untimely death and his work on allergens awareness has meant that today we have strict allergen protocols in food manufacturing, vast improvements in labelling and training for staff working in foodservice outlets on allergen awareness.

“Dorothy Cullinane too was a champion of allergen labelling and food intolerance and her work brought about a greater understanding of the issues in the food industry. SOFHT is delighted to offer an award in her name and for David Reading to be its first recipient.”

Related content

Leave a reply

Food and Drink Technology