Gregg Wallace criticised for allergy views

07 September 2015 by
Gregg Wallace criticised for allergy views

MasterChef presenter Gregg Wallace has been criticised on social media for suggesting that people with food allergies should give restaurants 48 hours' notice before they dine.

Speaking at the Dundee Flower and Food Festival at the weekend, the former restaurateur said he did not think people should turn up to restaurants and say "I can't eat this; I can't eat that, what are you going to do about it?"

He said: "I think legislation should be introduced so that if you have an allergy to something you must give the restaurant 48 hours' notice so they can send you the meal they plan to cook and you can decide if you want it, rather than just turn up and expect the whole restaurant to change what they do because someone can't eat it. That's my opinion."

Stephanie Burns, who uploaded a video clip (see below) containing the comment on Facebook, said Wallace was "Very rude and discriminatory on his views towards allergies; this is not people's choice".

She added: "My son has CMPA and other allergies; you try living with it as a child and a parent! Then see what you think!"

Twitter user Allergy Mum UK @foodallergyuk tweeted: "Disappointed in your #allergy comments @GreggAWallace. Eating out is a huge leap of faith. We take it very seriously. We need chefs to, too."

To which Wallace replied: "Agreed, contact restaurants in advance to reduce risks."

Another Twitter user Sarah @Mrs_Jones_UK tweeted: "Please recant your ignorant views re food allergies again!! Perhaps the press would like to hear your views."

Wallace replied: "I'm happy to share them, they are very practical."

Stef Fowler commented on Facebook: "His (Wallace's) wording and attitude really aren't very good but I do agree with letting restaurants know in advance. It allows kitchens time to think of nice options rather than on-the-spot thinking during a busy service where it doesn't really reflect their best/most enjoyable work. I also think it gives those with allergies a much less stressful experience letting the staff know the situation."

Wallace told *The Caterer*: "In order to protect the customer and the restaurant I'm suggesting 48 hours' notice be given to the restaurant. "This of course gives the restaurant time to prepare and reduces the chances of an accident. The restaurant could possibly e-mail a proposed dish the customer could choose." [Gregg Wallace closes Wallace and Co in Putney >> *MasterChef's* Gregg Wallace to open restaurant in Bermondsey >>
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