This has to be a celiacs worst nightmare and unfortunately it was a reality for 38 year old Kristy Richardson, from Portsmouth in the UK. Kristy was eating at one of Jamie Oliver’s Italian Restaurants where she told three staff members she required a gluten-free pasta dish and was assured this could be provided. Instead, she was given ordinary, wheat pasta and became violently sick for hours after eating the meal.
A legal battle followed the incident with the restaurant chain pleading guilty to selling food not of the nature, substance or quality demanded by a purchaser, a breach of the Food Safety Act. The lawyer acting for Jamie’s chain said that staff thought she had ordered a vegetarian, rather than a gluten-free and vegetarian option?!?
The chain’s lawyer said “Jamie’s Italian sincerely apologizes that it has fallen short of its food safety obligations…It takes this extremely seriously. It is a matter of very sincere regret to the company that any customer should suffer illness as a result of any meal served by us.”
New procedures and additional staff training on how to deal with allergens has now been introduced. Mrs Richardson got an out of court settlement and the chain were fined £8,000.
What are your thoughts on this? Have you ever had something similar happen? What did you do about it?