Why You Should Care About Nut-Free Replacements
We live in the golden age of innovative new food and drink, replacements to their traditional, often problematic counterparts. Advancements across categories have allowed us to begin enjoying our favorite foods without the health or environmental problems that often come with the originals. Companies like Beyond Meat, Impossible Foods, and Oatly have made great strides in shifting our perspective of classic, everyday foods, allowing us to believe that nontraditional inputs can create the tastes, textures, and experiences with food we hold near and dear.
Of course, not everyone is sold on the idea. To some, setting your sights on the foods people have been eating for generations and fundamentally changing them is a recipe for disaster. And when we feel that we don’t have to make a change, more often than not, we don’t. Getting us to care about why these foods exist requires us to put it in terms we can understand — and really feel connected to.
Take plant-based meat alternatives for example. Most people can physically eat meat from animals. Some choose not to, for ethical, health-related, religious, or other reasons, but it’s just that — a choice. Regularly eating meat has been a part of the vast majority of cultures since the beginning of time, and asking people to remove it from their diet is no easy feat. But when it comes to certain foods, some of us refrain from consuming them not out of desire, but necessity. That’s why we created our Peanut-Free Spread. If you think that peanut allergies only exist in the elementary school cafeteria, think again. Food allergies affect millions of Americans, and their impacts reach far and wide.
Going By the Numbers
Before we go any further, we thought it would be useful to get a better sense of just how prevalent food allergies are. All statistics shared come from FARE (Food Allergy Research and Education).
- 32 million Americans have food allergies (this works out to about 1 in 10 adults and 1 in 13 children)
- Peanut and tree nut allergies combined affect 10 million Americans
- The prevalence of peanut and tree nut allergies in children more than tripled between 1997 to 2008
- About 40% of children and over half of adults with adults have experienced a severe allergic reaction
Even though these numbers already represent a significant portion of the population, we all know that food allergies don’t just affect those who have them: they affect us all. Whether you’re the parent of an allergy-sufferer and have a nut-free household or simply exist in a wide variety of public spaces — schools, offices, airplanes, and more — chances are you come into contact with the effects of food allergies more than you think. More importantly, your food choices can have a direct impact on those who do have them.
Ditch the Nuts, Not the Flavor
Even if opting for a spread sans nuts is a necessity, that doesn’t mean you should have to compromise on flavor. And for those of us who aren’t required to refrain from traditional peanut butter, but want to support those who are, having a creamy, nutty replacement without the nuts is a HUGE plus.
So next time you’re enjoying your daily PB&J, late-night peanut butter cookies, or any of the peanut butter-filled foods you incorporate into your life, consider swapping out for our Peanut-Free Spread. You likely won’t notice the difference, but those with food allergies sure will.