One of the hallmarks of National Peanut Board’s (NPB) efforts in the area of food allergy outreach, education and research has been collaboration. This includes working alongside food allergy advocacy organizations to cooperate to find solutions for those with peanut allergies. Early on in this effort, NPB established a relationship with the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Connection Team (FAACT). For seven years, NPB and FAACT have worked together on projects ranging from supporting the food allergy community in connecting and educating the public about the importance of accurate diagnosis to promoting early introduction of peanut foods to help prevent peanut allergies.
And since FAACT’s Food Industry & Research Summit started six years ago, NPB has been a sponsor. The summit brings together researchers, food industry experts, advocates and other stakeholders to discuss the impact of food allergies across a wide variety of areas. This year, as with so many other events, the Summit went virtual, but that did not diminish the quality of the content provided. All sessions were excellent with some of the most poignant sessions including a presentation from Dr. Shahzad Mustafa, allergist from Rochester, talking about the impact of food allergies on quality of life and a panel discussion by three parents of children with food allergies who shared their experiences with oral immunotherapy for peanut allergies.
NPB provided two speakers, including Ryan Lepicier, chief marketing officer for NPB and Sherry Coleman Collins, MS, RDN, LD registered dietitian nutritionist. Lepicier shared NPB’s latest efforts in the area of marketing and promotion of peanut foods with an emphasis on early introduction to prevent peanut allergies. “Our longstanding partnership with FAACT and other food allergy advocacy organizations has helped NPB build credibility and trust within the food allergy community. By investing in research and being part of the ongoing conversation about prevention and treatment, NPB is now viewed as an ally in the allergy community rather than an adversary,” he said.
Coleman Collins provided a deeper discussion of the area of early introduction to prevent peanut allergies, highlighting NPB’s collaborative work with the Egg Nutrition Center, as well as the growth of peanut-containing infant and toddler products specifically targeted at reducing the risk of peanut allergies. The audience was supportive and engaged, recognizing the value of NPB’s contribution to food allergy awareness.
“It is very important to carry on the collaboration between FAACT and industry as we continue to partner year-round on actionable projects in order to improve quality of life for the food allergy community,” stated Eleanor Garrow-Holding, FAACT President and CEO. “FAACT is grateful for the National Peanut Board’s continued, generous support each year supporting our Food Industry & Research Summit along with FAACT’s other programs and initiatives. We could not host our programs or continue our initiatives without the support of the National Peanut Board and our amazing partners.” This relationship is one great example of how collaboration helps everyone do more.