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 Post subject: Loblaws Signs
PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2011 9:50 am 
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Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2007 7:23 pm
Posts: 823
Location: Kingston
We shop at Loblaws. In addition, I also shop at Loblaws for a not for profit group. Yesterday we went to purchase steak. We were shocked to see an allergen sign for peanuts/nuts in the meat section. I stopped and asked an employee why these signs were placed there and she explained that someone might touch them who had peanuts or nuts so they had to put the sign up. We did a bit of a walk around and these signs are posted all over the place now and it is questionable why theye are posted in some places.

We see this as a breach of trust and a misuse of labelling laws. For peanut and nut allergic people this creates a huge barrier for allergic people. Now if we are to believe the signs we can no longer buy steak, hamburger, chicken , etc. at Loblaws because these signs have been posted . One also has to wonder why it is only peanut/nuts that are posted and why not the other 7 allergens (i.e milk, egg, etc.)

I have sent an email to Loblaws asking them to look more carefully at the true intent of the food labelling for allergens and how you are implementing food labelling within your stores. I also send an email to Health Canada.

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Mary


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 Post subject: Re: Loblaws Signs
PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2011 10:50 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2011 2:20 pm
Posts: 150
Location: Barrie Ontario Canada
Thanks for posting this Mary.
I have noticed this myself while shopping at Loblaws and at Zehrs. I have also asked employees about it and got the response that they are just trying to give as much information for their allergic customers so they can make an informed decision. I have been finding it harder and harder to find safe food lately. I think it is because we live is such a sue happy world that everyone is trying to protect themselves from being sued by over labeling. I have been refused service at restaurants because of my allergies and the fear of the restaurant employees and owners. Let us know what the response is.

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Sarah
Outgrew: Wheat, corn, egg, chicken, to name a few
Sensitive to Milk/Dairy products
Allergic to: Tree nuts, percocet, toradol, environmental allergies and chemical allergies
Migraines caused by scented products, barometric pressure


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 Post subject: Re: Loblaws Signs
PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2011 3:24 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2007 7:23 pm
Posts: 823
Location: Kingston
Here is the answer I received:
Quote:
Thank you for taking the time to write to us.

I am sorry to read of your disappointment in your local store signage.

Please know that the health and safety of our customers is a priority to us and we appreciate your feedback on the signage in our stores. I have taken the opportunity to share your feedback with our store operations team as it is so important to be aware of our customers concerns.

If you would be so kind as to provide me with the store location that you are referring to, this will be helpful.

We do apologize for any inconvenience that this issue may have caused you and if I can be of further assistance, please let me know and I will be more than happy to help you.



Sincerely,



I am unclear if this means it was correct signage or not? Loblaws is in a partnership with Anaphylaxis Canada so perhaps this is a result of someone being overzealous. I send a response asking for clarification but it just put me back in the customer service queue.
Of course my son was with me when I was shopping on the weekend so he rightly refuses to eat any of their meat products until I get this clarified. We taught him to obey allergy signs.
In addition, I shop and prepare meals for a young people’s not for profit and some children have the peanut/nut allergy so I can no longer purchase the meat there now.
UGH! I find this so frustrating.

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Mary


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 Post subject: Re: Loblaws Signs
PostPosted: Fri Aug 19, 2011 11:36 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 05, 2005 12:53 am
Posts: 375
Location: Alberta
I work as a pharmacist for the Loblaws group, and there is a huge program launching as we speak across the country for all Loblaws pharmacies (Zehrs, Superstore, No Frills, etc). All pharmacists are required to take the online course prepared by Anaphylaxis Canada for Alberta Education, and all pharmacies are being equipped with allergy handouts (including those food cards thingys that I've never had, but want!). We are also handing out free Epipen holders to all those who fill prescriptions for Epipens. They are really nice, and my son immediately stopped using his old one.

They are also going to be launching several new snack products labelled peanut-free in the next Insider's Report. All are prepared in a peanut-free facility.

I'm not sure what, if any the grocery staff are being trained on (probably nothing ... I don't even know any of the grocery employees at my store, they keep us pretty separate). Haven't noticed the signs in my store at all, but they could be there.

That's good feedback you're giving them - I'm sure they're just trying this as a marketing approach, but if they label the whole store as a potential peanut hazard, how are they expecting to sell their new peanut-free products?

I am pretty impressed with the online course. I took it last night, and the content is bang-on. I am certain it is the same one designed for Alberta Education (teachers course), as it is done by LEAP and the acknowledgments at the end of the course including a whack of Alberta Ed folks.

Sadly, the store I work at happens to be a franchise, so we are not being shipped any of the actual educational materials. I'm going to have to go into the city to pose as a customer to finally get my wallet allergen cards for ds!


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 Post subject: Re: Loblaws Signs
PostPosted: Sat Aug 20, 2011 12:12 am 
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Joined: Thu Feb 26, 2009 12:05 am
Posts: 649
Location: AB, Canada
This is interesting (& frustrating). I understand why they wouldn't declare a meat section free of allergens, so if that is the case, I guess it is logical that the allergen *could* be present? There are prepared fresh meats stuffed or encrusted with ingredients, I assume pine nuts or even almonds could make an appearance.

Makes shopping so difficult. Everyone knows that the person handling the steaks might have eaten a PB&J sandwich (& assume proper hygiene), seeing a sign on the counter makes it much more daunting.

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DSs 7,7,9 all PA


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 Post subject: Re: Loblaws Signs
PostPosted: Sun Aug 21, 2011 12:50 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2005 6:39 pm
Posts: 2948
Location: Toronto
Write to Galen Weston Jr. you Loblaws shoppers. I'm sure this isn't what's intended, given that Loblaws and related stores have just launched this big program. AL has written on a no. of the new products, and I just got my Insider's Report with a 2-page spread on all the PN-free products.

Hard to believe the intention is to serve allergic customers snacks, then take away prods on the other side. Possible it's an issue of misunderstanding in implementation?

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Allergic to soy, peanut, shellfish, penicillin


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 Post subject: Re: Loblaws Signs
PostPosted: Sun Aug 21, 2011 3:36 pm 
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Site Admin

Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6476
Location: Ottawa
Letters! :bouncygreen We can do it! :bouncyblue
Here is their press release regarding this initiative:
http://www.loblaw.ca/default.aspx?Secti ... 7d75e6bf53

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Moderator
Daughter: asthma, allergies to egg, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, most legumes (not soy) & penicillin. Developing hayfever type allergies.
Husband: no allergies
Me: allergies to some tree that flowers in May
Cat: allergic to beef, pork and lamb


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 Post subject: Re: Loblaws Signs
PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 9:53 am 
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Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2007 7:23 pm
Posts: 823
Location: Kingston
Here is the response:
Quote:




Further to my email to you, I have been able to investigate this issue and the allergen alert signage that you see in our stores is required to is be posted in all departments where store prepared foods or store packaged items are displayed. it is not possible to guarantee that any product sold from bulk, prepared, packaged or served food at our retail counters have not come into contact with an allergen, as allergens are carried in our stores in many of our departments. Since peanuts and nuts are a common allergen, they are posted on our signage, however our signage does sate: “We cannot guarantee that any items have not come into contact with peanuts, nuts or other allergens”



Ms Greenspan, we do appreciate your concern regarding this issue, please be assured that the health and the safety of all our customers are a priority to us and if I can be of further assistance regarding this issue, please let me know and I will be more than happy to help you.



Sincerely,



Thoughts on this anyone????

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Mary


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 Post subject: Re: Loblaws Signs
PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 8:36 am 
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Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2007 7:23 pm
Posts: 823
Location: Kingston
Now that I have the final answer I will be writing Loblaws.

For those of you who would like to write:

Galen G. Weston
Loblaw Companies Limited
1 President's Choice Circle,
Brampton, Ontario, L6Y 5S5
Attention: LCL Customer Relations Centre


Customer service go to contact us:

http://talktous.presidentschoice.ca

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Mary


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 Post subject: Re: Loblaws Signs
PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 2:21 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 05, 2010 11:37 am
Posts: 1523
Location: Alberta
http://www.halifaxnewsnet.ca/News/2011- ... -lunches/1

Quote:
For the most part, food allergies would fall under the school board’s Life Threatening Allergies policy that can be found online athttp://www.hrsb.ns.ca/files/downloads ... ergies.pdf.

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Myself - Seasonal, cats
dd-asthma (trigger - flu) anaphylactic to eggs, severe allergies to bugspray and penicilin,pulmicort
ds-Seasonal, cats and OAS
dh-allergy cats, bugspray and guava, outgrew egg allergy


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 Post subject: Re: Loblaws Signs
PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 9:10 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 26, 2009 12:05 am
Posts: 649
Location: AB, Canada
I've been thinking about this thread, since we do shop at superstore, and will sometimes make a special trip there just to get the mini muffins (peanut free). I think the signs are just a CYA on the part of the store. There are no guarantees in life, and although we trust certain products (like most dare cookies & crackers, mini 'safe' chocolate bars) I know there is always a risk, and an error could have occured.

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DSs 7,7,9 all PA


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 Post subject: Re: Loblaws Signs
PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2011 7:44 am 
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Site Admin

Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6476
Location: Ottawa
How about including this wording in your letter?
Quote:
Precautionary statements should only be used in situations where the food preparation or manufacturing conditions have an identified risk of potentially introducing the allergenic ingredient and/or its derivatives that could not have been avoided through good manufacturing practices. The over-use of precautionary statements on food labels may only serve to decrease consumer confidence in the validity of these statements.

http://www.inspection.gc.ca/english/fss ... rgee.shtml

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Moderator
Daughter: asthma, allergies to egg, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, most legumes (not soy) & penicillin. Developing hayfever type allergies.
Husband: no allergies
Me: allergies to some tree that flowers in May
Cat: allergic to beef, pork and lamb


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