Lucinda Bruce-Gardyne, Genius Gluten Free

Genius Gluten Free founder Lucinda Bruce-Gardyne

Genius Gluten Free has teamed up with social enterprise Allergy Adventures to teach schoolchildren about food allergies and intolerances.

The brand’s founder, Lucinda Bruce-Gardyne, and her counterpart at Allergy Adventures, Hailey Phillips, are working together to create an education programme for youngsters, which will be shared with primary schools across the UK from the autumn.

The partnership follows research commissioned by Genius that revealed a “significant lack of knowledge and understanding” among UK schoolchildren aged seven to 11 when it came to food, ingredients and food allergies, said Bruce-Gardyne.

“It is so important that children learn about where their food comes from and different dietary requirements from a young age, and it’s equally important they are aware of the symptoms associated with different food allergies.”

The research involved a poll of 2,010 British children and showed that 80% now have a classmate with an allergy. But more than half (51%) of the children surveyed claimed to have never been taught about food allergies by a teacher.

Almost a quarter (23%) of those surveyed thought that those with an allergy to eggs could still eat them if they were scrambled or in an omelette, while 17% believed people with a nut allergy could still enjoy peanut butter, and 10% that parsnips grow on trees and pears grow in pairs.