A primary school has left parents furious after it decided to ban all products containing nuts from the school.
Headteacher Sharon Tarr, from Ide school near Exeter, wrote to parents telling them about the ‘nut free environments’ which began at the start of term yesterday.
The banned list includes peanuts or peanut butter, packs of nuts, Nutella and most chocolate spreads, fruit and cereal (muesli) bars that contain nuts, chocolate bars or sweets that contain nuts.
It also includes sesame seed rolls, cakes made with nuts, nougat, Baklava, Turkish Delight, sauces that contain nuts and biscuits – and she urges parents to check biscuits labels.
And Miss Tarr also wrote: ‘This list is not exhaustive, so please check the packaging of products closely.’
But some parents have reacted angrily to this wide ranging ban on food products.The ban applies to 130 boys and girls aged four to eleven at the school as well as its pre school and after school club.
One mum said: ‘Parents whose children have nut allergies know what their children need. The majority of children are being penalised over this extensive ban. There isn’t much we can give them to eat.’
And another parent said: ‘The only nut ban should be the head – this is ridiculous.’
But Miss Tarr said of the ban: ‘This is to protect new children starting with us in January who suffer from severe nut allergies.
‘If a pupil with a nut allergy comes into contact with a nut product, it can have life threatening consequences.
‘It can easily be contracted from a simple touching of hands, not washing hands properly or touching tables that have been contaminated.
‘From January 2018 the school, pre-school and after school club will become nut free environments.’
She said the school has a policy not to use nuts in food prepared on the site.
She said: ‘Our suppliers provide us with nut free products, however they cannot guarantee freedom from nut traces.’
One parent said: ‘Children with nut allergies is nothing new and people have coped very well in the past. And the head even admits their suppliers cannot guarantee that there wont be any nut traces in
the food they prepare.
‘There isn’t much left we can feed our children from that blacklist.’