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The seasonal candy aisles at Wegmans Food Markets now feature prominent signage directing shoppers to an online chart detailing gluten and major allergens, including peanuts, tree nuts, egg, dairy and soy, present in common Halloween treats.
Items on the chart are listed by item description and UPC number, with a "no" in the allergen box meaning that the item doesn't contain that particular allergen.
"Last Halloween, many of our customers asked for help choosing safe treats for children with food allergies," noted Wegmans Category Merchant Jennifer Komendat, who oversees candy. "We listened closely to that need and wanted to provide clear, accurate information this season. More than six months ago, we began reaching out to our Halloween candy suppliers, asking if they'd like to participate by verifying allergen statements and carefully checking ingredient lists so that we could gather the information into one simple reference chart."
"If you or someone in your family has food allergies, you have a game plan, but if you’re buying treats for someone else's child who may have a food allergy, you'll be shopping for something you don't typically buy, and that can be tricky," adds Wegmans Corporate Nutrition and Product Labeling Manager Jane Andrews. "Easy access to this information online and in the store can be a relief to the customer who may be looking for candy that's peanut-free or dairy-free to bring into a classroom, a party or to hand out to trick-or-treaters."
The chart features more than 30 traditional Halloween candies, including Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, Tootsie Rolls, Dots and Junior Mints. Wegmans has also included information for several products that have year-round availability in the fruit snack aisle.
Family-owned Wegmans, based in Rochester, N.Y., operates 86 stores in New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Virginia, Maryland and Massachusetts.