What School Foods Would You Least Expect to Be Unsafe?

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Jesse's teacher asked me last week to provide a list to her that she can give to the parents of the other children of what foods you would least expect to be unsafe for a PA child. Right now, I'm only getting a couple of things popping into my head, probably because I've been reading labels for so many years now.

The thing I've found that surprises most everyone is popsicles. They are sold at my son's school for fundraising.

The other big thing I could think of was any candy - I know that even most packaged candy from manufacturers (not bulk candy) contains the "may contain" label so there go the ju jubes, jelly beans, etc. So, check the labels on any candy you think to send into school with your child.

Store brand foods - check the labels diligently. But with this I have a dilemma. The store brand foods don't always label properly and you do have to contact the actual store to verify if the product is safe or not.

Granola bars - I'm pretty sure that most of them are not safe.

After that, my mind goes blank. I know what I pack for Jesse's lunch, and will pack for his sister's lunch, and it's been pretty standard for the last two years.

Ham sandwich, Ritz or Triscuit crackers, Oreo or Chips Ahoy cookies, carrot sticks, apple, homemade muffins, juice box, milk, yoghurt. On the odd occasion when I let Jesse have candy, it's "safe" Rowntree chocolate bars or Smarties. What else am I packing him tomorrow?

I really felt that the Safe Snack and Lunch List (that is posted here) provides the parents with a great start for what to pack in their child's lunch.

But if I was just starting to read labels for lunch and snacks, what things would you think you didn't have to read the label on?

I'd really appreciate any help with this one, as always.

Many thanks and best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

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On Sep 3, 2001

Bread! More and more I am seeing warnings on bread packages. Even worse, the warnings are not immediately after the ingredient lists, but are squeezed in elsewhere in tiny print. You really have to LOOK for it. I've noticed this on nearly all the Jewel/Albertsons breads and other brands too. It says something like "Made on bakery equipment that may also process nuts and seeds. May not be safe for individuals with allergies to these products." Vague much? I'll bet they can't get away with this in Canada, but they do it here. It's on bread, hot dog and hamburger rolls, etc.

On Sep 4, 2001

Cindy, I know you mentioned candies. The first thing I thought of, with Halloween coming, is candy corn. Chances are it'll be labeled, but you never know.

This is off your topic here, but... You have just been 'in the thick of it' lately, haven't you?!?!? It seems that dealings with PA come in waves - and you're getting pounded right now. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

Take care, Tammy

On Sep 4, 2001

Lam, thank-you SO much, you are such a sweetheart. I don't know if I've really been in the thick of it more than a lot of parents posting here, it's just that I'm so vocal about it! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/eek.gif[/img] What I find wonderful about being able to post here is that it does relieve the stress of it all because no one in my *real* life understands except my DH.

Also, I receive wonderful, caring posts such as yours and others I have seen when I have posted different information and people thank me for posting whatever it is despite the difficulties I'm currently dealing with.

Probably like everyone else, it's the weeks building up to school and not the first day that are the most unsettling. To-day was the first day of school for Jesse. It was at the new school so there was an opening ceremony (complete with bag pipes [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/eek.gif[/img] ). We left the school with not a thought of PA in our heads. Everything had basically been taken care of by now and again, that's where I have to thank everyone here for the tremendous support and encouragement, also wonderful information, because through all of this, I was able to get things done so that I could walk away from Jesse this morning just like any other parent did.

Many many thanks and best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

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On Sep 4, 2001

The second day of school my son came home with a note from school with a list of some "safe Finger Food Snack" ideas and a "Please Avoid These High-Risk Foods" list. I was surprised because this list didn't come from me, I found out later that it was originally written by another parent with a PA child in the school last year.

The school has no restrictions on foods eaten in the cafeteria, but snacks and food eaten in the classroom must be peanut-free if there is a child with PA in the class. The school administration likes this list and continues to use it because it gives parents ideas about what is ok and what isn't.

Please Avoid These High-Risk Foods:

- No Peanut Butter, Peanut or Nut Products - No Baked Goods with Peanuts, Peanut Butter or Nuts - No Ritz Bits* - No Prepackaged chrackers and cheese* - No Granola Bars or Kudos Bars* - No Chocolate Candy* - No Prepackaged Snack Mixes*

* These products almost always contain peanut butter even if the particular flavor is not peanut butter.

I hope this helps!

On Sep 4, 2001

Boy this list can go on I guess. My big fear used to be the Combos Peanut butter snacks. They look just like the cheese ones. Also there are peanut butter dipped pretzles out now. Don't forget black licorice. Claire

On Sep 5, 2001

whats up with black licorice? I hadn't heard about that!

On Sep 6, 2001

nugentdhn, True licorice is a legume; therefore, a possible cross-react with peanuts. Others here have described reactions to licorice. My son has reacted.

Sometimes pepperoni can be a problem because licorice is used in it somehow - flavoring??? Several people have described reactions to pepperoni, but have never found if the licorice connection is the reason.

HTH! Tammy

On Sep 6, 2001

"I am a school nurse and am interested in a list of products that contain peanuts or peanut oil that are not obvious. Thank you"

---------------------- Many people contact us looking for the type of information this thread was started for. Above is text we received by email today.

Keep up the good work!

------------------ Stay Safe,

[email]Chris@PeanutAllergy.Com[/email]

On Sep 8, 2001

Ice cream ... it's pretty obvious to all of us, but I've found that almost everybody unfamiliar with PA assumes vanilla ice cream is always safe.

At my daughter's school, the children are given ice cream treat cups several times a year as a "gift" from the principal.

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