Allergies are a growing problem having almost doubled in the past decade and as a result more commercial kitchens are taking steps to make sure they can cater for customers with an allergy.

As well as being a sign of good practice, a sound allergy policy will also send the message that your business cares about its customers.

Catering to those with celiac disease and food allergies can seem daunting but there is advice readily available.

The most important step to take is to ensure transparency in your catering – namely can you list all the ingredients used.

The second most important factor, along with staff training, is to take steps to prevent cross-contamination in food preparation areas, which can be factored in when planning and installing a commercial kitchen.

Kitchen design and installation

When setting up a new kitchen consider designating food preparation areas during the design and installation stage. This includes surfaces kept solely for the preparation of certain foods – for example where no nuts or dairy are put on the surface.

In addition consider the actual cooking stage when planning kitchen design and installation. Many restaurants now have a designated ‘allergy fryer’ or a ‘gluten free’ fryer which helps to cut down on the possibility of cross contamination.

In a larger kitchen designating areas to cater for food allergies during kitchen design and installation can be an easy integration.

For commercial kitchens that are already established but which want to improve their allergy policy, upgrading equipment and rethinking the layout of the kitchen could make the space needed – it may be less than you think.

While allergies and celiac disease are serious medical issues, catering for these in your kitchen will also appeal to people who follow a gluten-free or vegan diet.

While many people unfortunately have no choice in the foods that they have to avoid, veganism and gluten-free diets are also on the rise through lifestyle and health choices.

Offering choice for all

The boom in vegan food in recent years has transformed menus in many restaurants, which of course, also means an improved offering for those with dairy allergies.

With laws around catering for allergies becoming clearer and more people becoming aware of food allergies, catering for them in your kitchen design and installation makes sense.

Caterline designs and installs commercial kitchens, including upgrades and installing refurbished equipment.

To make sure you can offer the menu that you want to, contact Caterline about your kitchen design and installation to see how we can help.