Deliveroo is giving operators the ability to display greater allergen info online

Some chains will test the tool in December, before other brands start using the service in January.

25 October 2018
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Brands including Tortilla, Tommi’s Burger Joint, Mildreds and Chipotle have signed up to a new Deliveroo tool which will display dish-by-dish allergen information. The feature is expected to go live in December.

The launch will initially involve 30 restaurant brands with almost 300 sites, before chains such as Yo! Sushi, PizzaExpress, Pho and Byron join the scheme in January.

Following the trial in December, 700 further restaurants will also be able to use the new feature. It will allow them to show which of the 14 EU allergens each individual food item contains when customers are browsing the menu.

Until now, restaurants and takeaways have not been able to display granular information for each dish on delivery apps. Instead, it has usually been shown in store or communicated via restaurant staff. As a result, Deliveroo’s engineering team has been working with restaurant partners to design the new tool, with claims it is a UK first for a delivery platform.

The new menu system will allow restaurants to simply and quickly upload allergen information, according to the company, increasing transparency for consumers before they order food and encouraging action from operators in this area.

Deliveroo’s announcement follows the death of two people from allergic reactions after eating Pret a Manger products and comes after the UK Government announced a review will be carried out into the food labelling laws between now and Christmas.

Informed meal choices

While Deliveroo’s allergen information for individual items won’t be live until December, it is making immediate changes to ensure existing warnings are more prominent in its app. A new banner at the top of each menu will remind consumers about potential allergen content and urge them to contact restaurants directly before any purchase.

“A number of Deliveroo’s major restaurant operators have asked for this level of functionality, and following active consultation and collaboration we want to offer every restaurant the ability to display the same information previously only available on some partners’ websites or in store,” the company said.

Other changes include increasing the ability of consumers to flag up their allergies directly with restaurants when they order, and Deliveroo will be writing to all the 10,000 UK restaurants it works with to urge them to use this tool.

Dan Warne, managing director of Deliveroo UK and Ireland, said: “This is great news for consumers who want more information about the food they are ordering online. Deliveroo believes that people should have an amazing delivery experience and that must include making informed choices.

“Overhauling our menus is not a simple task, but customers with allergies need this extra transparency before they order which is why we are working with our restaurant partners to make it happen.”

Technology is set to play an increasing role in ensuring up-to-date and correct allergen information is provided to consumers. Food Spark recently reported on the tech companies that are banding together to allow businesses to deploy live allergen recipes and menus across all points of sale, online channels and apps in just one click, as well as the work being done with a big-name label company to provide solutions in store.

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