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Reviewed by Martina Svyantek for Readers' Favorite
“The Art of Planning Allergen-Free Events” by Stephanie Courtney is a very informative book for those who are looking for information on food allergies, especially as related to event planning. For those who do not have food allergies on their own, this is a wonderful guide into the concerns that their guests might potentially have about the food being prepared. While the guidelines listed by the author might seem like common sense, they are also ideas that readers might not understand if they are not food allergy sufferers. Guides like this are important because food allergies, as the author points out, are not food trends. People with food allergies and intolerance are forced to eat in a certain manner because they have no choice. Taking this fact into account must become a more common practice within event planning, especially when working with caterers unused to such requests. Children, teen, and weddings all have different issues that must be reviewed, given the guest lists, but with a little of the prior planning explained in this book, there will hopefully be no reason to stop the festivities.
I found the book to be well-written, with lots of website links provided so that readers could research food allergy issues on their own as well. Given the increasing number of people diagnosed with an allergy to something everyone else sees as innocuous (milk, peanuts, eggs, seafood, grains), this book can play an important role in planning events for large groups of people without compromising their safety.