The Do’s and Don’ts of Dining with Allergies on Campus

If you’re new to campus this Fall and have a food allergy (or maybe several), you may be feeling a little uneasy about what to expect. That’s normal! Rest assured, you are not alone. 

The Registered Dietitian and culinary team are here to support you in navigating your food selections on the meal plan. 

Below are some of the dos and don’ts that will help to keep you safe. 

Do: 

  • Visit dining halls, where you can always access a chef with specialized training to safely preparing meals for those with allergies and celiac disease. The chefs are the ones wearing a tall white hat. 
  • Identify yourself and your allergy to the chef or manager so they can assist you.
  • Ask a chef or manager for ingredients found at the self-serve stations. They will provide you with ingredients from back of house containers, which have a reduced chance of exposure to allergens. 
  • Book an appointment with the Registered Dietitian or email dining@queensu.ca if you have questions or are struggling in any way with dining on campus. 
  • Carry your epinephrine with you at all times. In the event of an allergic reaction call 911 and Campus Security and Emergency Services 613-533-6111.

Don’t: 

  • Feel embarrassed to talk about your allergy or to ask for assistance. We are well experienced in supporting those with allergies and are more than happy to help.
  • Take chances on ingredients. If you do not see a menu board or you are uncertain, ask for help from a chef. 
  • Assume the foodservice staff member is a chef. While all of our foodservice staff receiving training and understand the severity of food allergies, our chefs are the experts you can trust to guide you and prepare your meal.
  • Rely on retail food outlets. If you are desperate to grab a meal on the go, visit one of our Queen’s retail locations (The Lazy Scholar, Location 21, Wally’s, or Flipit) which have a chef on site to prepare your meal.
  • Use self-serve stations. The risk of cross contamination and exposure to allergens is much higher. 
  • Hesitate to take your epinephrine if you are experiencing an allergic reaction. 

Disclaimer:

Hospitality Services does not prepare food in a certified allergen-free facility. While we take every precaution to reduce risk of exposure and cross contamination to allergens, we do not guarantee any given food item will be completely free of a specific food allergen.

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