With an eye on the food allergy community as a unique group of consumers since 2008, we're on a quest to find and share ways to continue enjoying the good things in life allergen-free.

03 March 2009

Update from Anaphylaxis & Food Allergy Association of Minnesota re: "Peanut-Snacks on Airplanes"

Peanut-Snacks on Airplanes
An Update from the
Anaphylaxis & Food Allergy Association of MN (AFAA)

This Week:
Your opinion Matters!

A delegation consisting of members of AFAA's Board of Directors - including medical director Dr. Allan Stillerman - will be meeting directly with Northwest/Delta Airlines this week.

An aide from U.S. Representative Oberstar's will participate in the meeting, and possibly an aide from U.S. Senator Klobuchar's office. (Both members of Congress represent Minnesota on their respective transportation committees.)

"We want to give voice to those affected by this policy change," said AFAA Executive Director, Nona Narvaez.

AFAA is encouraging all food allergic individuals and family members to participate in a survey and forward it to others affected by food allergens on airflights. The survey results will be helpful information to relay to the airlines in AFAA's efforts to influence them to accommodate passengers with food allergies.

AFAA is also collecting e-mails and letters directly and from a national food allergy organization to deliver directly to the airline during the meeting. You are encouraged to submit your opinions on the survey page or to airplanes@minnesotafoodallergy.org.

This e-mail with the survey link can be forwarded to friends and relatives so they may participate also: Use forward button from inside this e-mail or provide them the URL:

Flying With Food Allergies
Travel Tips

Be Prepared:
  1. Carry Epinephrine(preferably more than one injector) and meds on you (not in suitcase or carry-on bag)
  2. Don't Eat Airline Food (Bring your own from home)
  3. Wipe Seats & Trays (bring wipes from home)
  4. Communicate (with flight attendants, reservation agent, gate agent, etc. prior to flight)
Additional suggestions:

Check seat pockets for mislaid refuse

Have wipes handy in case of accidental skin contact (but remember that handwashing with running water is better)

Use carseats on the plane for your child (this will reduce their contact with seats, etc.)

Dress in long sleeves and slacks to avoid skin contact

Choose seat assignments early to ensure that food allergic children are seated next to or between parents: ask to switch seats if necessary

Bring enough food in case of delays

Before departure, ask the flight attendants to inform the captain about you/your child's severe allergy so that they will be prepared to land the plane early if necessary

If you ask, some airlines will make an announcement requesting that passengers voluntarily refrain from eating peanuts

If you ask, some airlines will not serve peanuts for 3 rows in front and behind a food allergic passenger (a buffer zone)

Politely educate those around you: most people want to be courteous and careful

In case of a reaction:
  • Quickly follow your doctor's directions for treating allergic reactions
  • Inform the flight attendants immediately
  • If the reaction is severe or moderate, seek medical care immediately upon landing

With forethought and preparation it is possible to fly safely

AFAA logo Anaphylaxis and Food Allergy Association of Minnesota (AFAA)
2200 Hendon Avenue; St. Paul, MN 55108

AFAA is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to educate, advocate, and support those with food allergies.

Join us in Taking the Fear Out of Food Allergies!
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