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.

09 July 2009

Is the Moon Made Out of Peanuts?

The boys are out of school for the summer and I have signed them up for a number of free workshops and activities at our town library. The library has fantastic things scheduled--rocket building workshops, a visit from the Boston Museum of Science, and all kinds of science-related activities. Today's workshop was an intro to astronomy for ages 5 to 10. The presenter/speaker handed out containers filled with a white unidentified powder and small marbles and balls to illustrate how craters are formed on the moon. The kids sensed an opportunity to get their hands dirty, and me? I immediately thought to myself "What is that powder? It looks like flour. But what kind of flour? Is it something besides flour?" So, I had to ask about the white powder. When my question was met with a somewhat confused look, I had to then explain my son has a peanut allergy. It was, as I expected, all purpose white flour, but better safe than sorry since peanuts have a tendency to show up in all kinds of unexpected places. The speaker told me that he couldn't imagine peanuts in a powdered form. After all, he said, "how would they remove the peanut oil?" (Umm....ever heard of peanut flour?!)

It was a good opportunity for me to help teach my son that peanuts and nuts can show up anywhere, and that anytime food is involved--even for a science experiment--we have to ask and keep away if nuts or peanuts are present. Just for the record, peanut flour does exist. I knew this, of course, but didn't think the kids workshop was the right time to share that knowledge! For a little more info on peanut flour, check this link. The workshop, with its flour activity, was a good reminder that when it comes to food allergies, you can't ever let your guard down, even in places and activities where food isn't normally present.


Jenny said...

Yes, we just had a similar thing with a science camp. No peanut flour but they did eat "astronaut ice cream" in class (it was safe for my child) -- and I was concerned they'd use nuts for something (remember making peanut brittle in chem class anyone?)

Thanks for the reminder!

Jane Anne said...

I love your post title. It seems like peanuts turn up everywhere these days. I agree with Jenny - this was a wonderful reminder. I can't imagine forgetting to check things out but I don't think I can be reminded enough.

I followed the peanut flour link just to see what it was. I can't help but cringe looking at that.