BBC Apprentice Runner-Up Camilla ‘she’d be able to sell nut milk to someone with a nut allergy’

I am sure it was meant in a lighthearted way, but it upset me because she didn’t think twice that her product could possibly kill someone with a severe allergy if they did drink it.
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I recently read an interview with BBC Apprentice runner-up Camilla Ainsworth about the nut milk product she was pitching to sell to Lord Sugar in the final challenge. I was very disappointed when I read that if she could employ someone to help sell the product she would bring along Jackie and quoted ‘I think she’d be able to sell nut milk to someone with a nut allergy’ I felt like her answer was very insensitive to people living daily with a severe nut allergies including myself.

I don't condemn her for what she said because she (like many) is probably uneducated in this area, however, I feel disappointed that food allergies aren’t being taken seriously enough. I find that when I tell new people about my allergy, they don't fully understand how severe having a nut allergy is and I think this is down to the lack of real coverage/awareness out in the world. I don’t feel like much thought was given into what she said and mentioned it as a passing comment, without realising how hurtful this could be to someone living with an allergy. Additionally, it’s ironic that Camilla would say such a thing when her product is designed, partly, for those who suffer from an allergy to dairy. In doing so, she’s essentially being contradictory to her own brand.

I am sure it was meant in a lighthearted way, but it upset me because she didn't think twice that her product could possibly kill someone with a severe allergy if they did drink it. Perhaps if people had experienced the sensation of swelling neck and lips while struggling for breath themselves, they might take allergies more seriously.

Instead of making this a negative post, I want to point out the severity of allergies, and provide some information for people who may not know it otherwise. I want to get people talking about allergies and the symptoms you should look out for.

Anaphylaxis Campaign put this list together:

What are the symptoms of a severe allergic reaction?

·         generalised flushing of the skin

·         nettle rash (hives) anywhere on the body

·         sense of impending doom

·         swelling of throat and mouth

·         difficulty in swallowing or speaking

·         alterations in heart rate

·         severe asthma

·         abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting

·         sudden feeling of weakness (drop in blood pressure)

·         collapse and unconsciousness

Hopefully by sharing this article and bringing more awareness to websites like May Contain and Anaphylaxis Campaign, we can get more people to educate themselves about allergies. Day by day, I hope to inform people what it's like having an allergy and make more people aware.