FSA to take action after Byron allergy inquest

By Sophie Witts contact

- Last updated on GMT

Food Standards Agency to take action after Byron allergy inquest

Related tags: Allergen, Restaurant, Food standards agency

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has announced further steps to protect those with food allergies and intolerances when eating out.

It follows the inquest in to the death of teenager Owen Carey,​ who suffered a fatal reaction after eating a chicken burger coated in buttermilk at a Byron restaurant in 2017.

The FSA's plans include meeting with Byron and its local authority and commissioning a “root cause” analysis of the incident to share the lessons learned.

It will also pilot a project to develop better reporting of allergic reactions when they occur. Byron said in a statement on its website that it was not told about Carey’s death until August 2017 and was not informed by the coroner that it was linked to his meal at the chain until February 2018. By this time records of allergy requests were no longer in its system.

The FSA will also improve guidance for enforcement officers and run an awareness campaign at the end of the year to remind businesses and consumers of the need to keep people with allergies safe.

Carey’s case has prompted calls for clearer allergen labelling on menus. His sister Emma Kocher said restaurants relying on verbal communication between a customer and waiter was “simply not good enough”.

The Carey family told the BBC​ they have not ruled out further legal action.

Related topics: Business & Legislation

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