near-incident at a school event

School organized an outdoor event (winter olympiad) and, unbeknownst to us, had a hot chocolate station to help keep the kids warm. My wife found out because she happened to be there, and inquired about the ingredients. "Oh they're safe, we checked." Good thing my wife double-checked, as one of the main ingredients was "modified milk ingredients" and there was a "may contain traces of eggs" warning.
She called me to whip up some home-made hot chocolate and rush it over to the school, then told the office she wanted to meet with the principal to discuss.

One week later without news, I dropped in at the VP's office, who apparently was just about to call me. She had the box with her and didn't realize "modified milk ingredients" was milk. (?!) She also hadn't read far enough to see the egg warning. (??!!)
After a "friendly" little chat, I sent the P and VP an email reminding them of the seriousness of ingredient-awareness for all people with allergies, of the board's anaphylaxis policy, and offered to help them meet the policy's requirements for prevention planning in the next week or two. I hope they'll take me up on that offer.


Vegan Banana Maple Oatmeal Cookies

Adapted from original recipe at http://blog.fatfreevegan.com/2010/02/banana-maple-oatmeal-cookies.html.

Preheat the oven to 375.

Prep the egg subst

  • 1 tsp ground chia seeds or 2 tsp egg replacer powder or 2 tsp. ground flaxseed
  • 2 tablespoons water
In a small mixing bowl, combine the chia seeds (or egg replacer or flaxseed) with the water and set aside until thickened (no waiting is necessary if packaged egg replacer is used.)

Prep the dry mixture

  • 1 cup regular or quick oats
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup raisins or dairy and nut-free trail mix
Mix the oats, flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon in a medium mixing bowl. Add the raisins.

Prep the wet mixture

  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 ripe banana, mashed
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
Add the maple syrup, vanilla, mashed banana, and lemon juice to the egg subst and combine well.

Combine and bake

Pour into the dry mixture and stir well - but don’t overmix. Drop 18 heaping tablespoons onto a baking sheet lined with a silicon mat or parchment paper. Flatten each cookie slightly with a fork. Bake for 8-12 minutes or until bottoms and sides are lightly brown. Cool for a few minutes on a wire rack before serving.


Servings: 18
Yield: 18 cookies
Because they contain no fat, these cookies are softer the day they are made and chewier the next day. If you prefer them soft, warm your day-old cookies in the microwave for a few seconds.


Media Advisory - Consumer and health advocates to call on PM to listen

from http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/February2011/01/c6957.html

Media Advisory - Consumer and health advocates to call on Prime Minister to listen to people at risk of life-threatening reactions, not just brewery industry on proposed food labelling regulations

TORONTO, Feb. 1 /CNW/ - Stalling by the federal government and last minute opposition by the powerful brewery industry are putting important proposed changes to Canada's food labelling laws at risk. The proposed regulations will make it easier for millions of Canadians affected by food allergy and celiac disease to know if there are ingredients in food or beverage products that could hurt, or worse, kill them.
As a result of this challenge to an important government initiative in support of public health, medical professionals, allergy groups, consumer activists and concerned Canadians are calling on the Prime Minister to show leadership and place the public interest over that of a private industry. They will be countering arguments in favour of an exemption to the regulations for the brewery industry and releasing important new information in support of passing the proposed regulations.


      Laurie Harada, Executive Director, Anaphylaxis Canada
Jim McCarthy, Executive Director, Canadian Celiac Association
Dr. Charles Frankish, Allergist