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    3 top tips to overcome the allergens challenge

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    Yvette Chatwin, General Manager at 30 Euston Square provides top tips for staying safe in the allergens minefield.

    When it comes to allergens and the UK’s allergen legislation, it’s imperative that the severity of its impact is understood, particularly by event organisers, which is a task that so often falls to PAs. This year the government removed a £20,000 upper limit to fines and manslaughter charges can now be imposed making the legislation something worth adhering to.

    Your job is to go above and beyond to ensure you accommodate the slightest need of every attendee, including their dietary requests. So what should be at the forefront of your mind when considering allergens? Here’s my top three tips to help you overcome the allergen challenge.

    1. Improve your registration process. While I would never wish to detract from an individual’s event experience, there is a substantial difference between those who don’t like bread or peanuts and those with a life-threatening gluten or nut allergy – you need to distinguish between the two by finding out their status when it comes to each of the 14 allergens identified in the government legislation.
    2. Appreciate the chef’s position. When last-minute changes and requests occur, both you as event organiser and the venue chefs are put under pressure to create last-minute dishes. Though most venues have allergen champions who are used to working under these pressures, these short-term requests often limit what can be achieved in terms of taste and creativity, which can negatively impact hospitality feedback. Stay ahead and work with the chefs to overcome the creativity challenge.
    3. Remember it’s not all doom and gloom. The provision of bespoke menus and dishes creates a truly personalised experience for an attendee, which makes them feel special and looked after, reflecting well on you as an organiser.

    Through an effective registration process, understanding of the legislation and a partnership approach we can deliver a positive event experience for all. The legislation enables us to understand and deliver on individual needs, while keeping everyone safe and most importantly demonstrating once again why you are the right PA for the job.

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    Molly Dyson

    Former Editor – PA Life

    All stories by: Molly Dyson