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#1 Mon 19 Mar 07 9:33am

Heidi B

Member
Member since Mon 19 Mar 07

No Home Baking!

Just thought I'd share this in case it's happening elsewhere...some learning centres in NZ are banning home baking due to issues with food allergies amongst children - see article below:

http://www.stuff.co.nz/3995438a7694.html

It's sad as shop brought food often has hidden calories, salt, fat etc and home baking is much better for our kids...

At least for now people may have the choice of not sending their kids to such centres.

I'm not lucky enough to have kids yet but still think that moves like this do not bode well for the future of cooking or society!

Anyway that's my rant of the week. exclaim

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#2 Mon 26 Mar 07 4:27am

The White Rabbit

Forum super champ
From Sydney, Australia
Member since Tue 22 Jun 04

Re: No Home Baking!

Think about it from the point of view of a parent who's child's life could be in danger from some of these foods. You wouldn't want to be sending your child somewhere every day where they could risk severe allergy or even death. Like you said, some people have no choice but to send their children to child care. Unfortunately, severe food allergies don't just happen to those who can afford individual in home care or a single income. These child care centres are probably taking these measures to avoid high insurance premiums and the risk of prosecution if a child is injured. I'd much rather send a kid to child care without any baked goods than risk another child's health.

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#3 Sat 31 Mar 07 10:38pm

Heidi B

Member
Member since Mon 19 Mar 07

Re: No Home Baking!

I understand where you're coming from and had already thought that too. But ultimatey shop brought food isn't guaranteed to be any safer - whilst the list of ingredients can help reduce the risks for someone with allergies - they are not always accurate.
If I had a child with an allergy that was that bad, I would prefer they ate their food separately from other children and only ate the food I made and provided for them. It is equally unfair to put unhealthy choices and processed foods on healthy children. We have a huge problem in NZ with obese and unhealthy children, and requiring them to only eat shop brought food during the day will only exacerbate the problem. It's a different sort of killing - long term damage to their bodies which leads to heart problems, diabetes and so on.
In addition, daycare centres could allow homebaking providing it didn't contain the main known dangers i.e. peanuts, peanut butter, and tree nuts (walnuts, almonds, cashews, pistachios, pecans, etc.), which account for probably 50-60% of allergies.
Your arguments regarding insurance premiums and prosecution are not really that relevant here in NZ, (although I understand premiums and prosecution are relevant factors elsewhere), as ACC laws cover most of this anyway i.e. only ACC levies are paid rather than specific insurance premiums, and daycare centres are not likely to be prosecuted unless they knowingly and deliberately feed a child something that they know they are not meant to eat.
The relative health impact on food allergin sufferers vs obesity in our country at least is pretty clear. The statistics on those who die from food allergies is a lot lower than those who are dying due to obesity.
At the end of the day parents should be able to have a choice as to how they want to manage risks to their children, and they should have choice over how their children eat.

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#4 Sun 01 Apr 07 12:26am

gregandjanine

Member
Occupation Teacher/Registered Nurse
From Brisbane Australia
Member since Fri 14 Apr 06

Re: No Home Baking!

My stance would be it is more about communication rather than placing sanctions on what you can and cannot do for your child in a Day Care Centre.

As the child links with their peers, the teacher/facilitator gets to know the individual children and also parents as the year goes on. Also as parents meet each other, they link together as well. This is not absolute but more general.

I don't see a problem in saying you can provide treats for the group as a whole, provided that the baking stays within certain parameters. Most commonly peanuts are an issue and also children in day care shouldn't be eating peanuts in the first place. It is recommended that peanuts not be given to a child under eight. So no baking with anything that contains peanuts, including peanut butter.

As children attend with life threatening allergies... maybe soy or dairy or whatever, then maybe that then can be communicated to the parent body. It can be done sensitively and also without identifying the child if need be.

These parametre's can be re-iterated in the weekly or fortnightly newsletter that generally is published for parents of the centre. Also if the day care centre is still hesitant, then can't parents list the ingredients on the baking, so that if a child does have an allergy, that child does not have to eat the baking? Maybe if both requests are asked and abided by, then the children can share safely and enjoy each others birthdays without fear of danger...

Just a thought.....

Cheers,
Janine   question

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#5 Sun 01 Apr 07 12:58am

amberpamba

Forum champ
Occupation Registered nurse
From Australia
Member since Thu 24 Jun 04

Re: No Home Baking!

With some allergies the child doesnt even need to eat the food to get sick. It only needs to be in the same room and it can cause a severe reaction.
Even if the other parents were careful in what they baked at home, there is still a risk. They would have to be pretty strict guidelines. It may only take a poorly washed utensil that previously had peanut butter on it which was then used to make these baked goods.
I just dont think I would want to send my child to daycare if they had a severe allergy, it is just so risky.

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#6 Sun 01 Apr 07 6:54am

gregandjanine

Member
Occupation Teacher/Registered Nurse
From Brisbane Australia
Member since Fri 14 Apr 06

Re: No Home Baking!

Really.....

Even with food allergies???

I didn't know that....

You learn something every day...

Janine

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#7 Mon 02 Apr 07 1:41am

The White Rabbit

Forum super champ
From Sydney, Australia
Member since Tue 22 Jun 04

Re: No Home Baking!

Were they not banning bought goods?


There was a house near my parents place that (before the occupants moved) had a sign on the front door (legible from the road) for people who had been in contact with eggs, fish and nuts not to approach the house. They had a child with severe allergies.

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