The National Restaurant Association, in supporting the industry’s commitment to practicing and promoting food safety, is focusing on food allergen awareness during National Food Safety Month.

Throughout September, the NRA’s National Food Safety Month campaign will showcase several aspects of the ServSafe Food Safety program, especially the recently launched ServSafe Allergens online course, designed to help front- and back-of-the-house employees better serve the growing number of restaurant customers that have food allergies.

This year’s campaign will seek to build the public’s knowledge and awareness of food allergens and the industry’s commitment to food safety education and training.

“Food safety and allergen training are top priorities for our nation’s nearly one million restaurant and food service establishments,” said William Weichelt, director of the NRA’s ServSafe program. “Food allergens affect more than 15 million Americans nationwide so food-safety education, especially regarding allergens, is vital to restaurant operators everywhere who provide high-quality dining experiences to more than 130 million guests daily. We are looking forward to highlighting the important strides the NRA and our partners are making with food allergen awareness and training.”

To enhance consumer safety when dining out, the NRA partnered with the Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) to create the ServSafe Allergens online course. For more information about the course, visit the ServSafe website.

The NRA also is highlighting the increased importance of food allergy training through its video, “Avoid Reaction by Taking Action.” View the video here.

National Food Safety Month is sponsored by SCA, a global hygiene company and manufacturer of Tork home paper products. This is the company’s third year of sponsorship.

“As [the number of people with] food allergies rises, understanding the precautions required when serving those guests is critical,” said Suzanne Cohen, marketing director of foodservice for SCA Americas. “We want to make sure our partners in the foodservice industry know how to take the appropriate actions to [prevent customers from experiencing] serious allergic reactions.”