Average folk might not realize it, but the world is a dangerous place for children with allergies. Those who can't process dairy, nuts, or chocolate find every birthday party a minefield, from the omnipresent pizza, to the chocolate cake and peanut M&M's. Breakfast and snack time, too, can pose a challenge. And that's why Chobani’s non-dairy line is a game-changer for kids with allergies. Many parents are going to rejoice at news of additional products from the leading yogurt brand.
Of course, there are many different kinds of food allergies, with the Food Allergy Research Education network (FARE) estimating that up to about 6 million American children have food allergies. That’s 1 in 13 kids, or approximately two in each classroom, FARE noted.
And dairy is one of the most common eight allergens including tree nuts, soy and shellfish, the website detailed, which result in the most dangerous reactions. It also typically occurs in kids.
All of which means that Chobani's new, plant-based recipe, Non-Dairy Chobani, will be news to parents' ears. It'll give kids and adults alike a new non-milk-based snacking choice — one that also boasts low sugar content, probiotics, and "natural ingredients," according to a press release.
The non-dairy yogurts are made from coconut and the line will include single-serve yogurt cups and drinks with such flavors as vanilla, strawberry, blueberry, a "slightly sweet" plain, and mango.
The items will retail starting at $1.99 and will be in grocers nationwide. The new products coincide with other new launches from the brand, including more flavors in the Less Sugar Greek Yogurt line.
The Chobani website confirmed that the new items contain plant-based ingredients and are lactose-free. My kids are lucky not to have serious food allergies, but we do deal with a dairy sensitivity.
So I can say from experiences that it's hard to have the one kid that can't have the cheese fries or to pizza or the ice cream. And I'm definitely delighted to know there will be more choices at my local supermarket when it comes to planning lunches.
Families with kids who have food allergies can have a bit of a road ahead of them when preparing for that child to start school, from getting a 504 plan in place for any special accommodations a child may need, to educating teachers and other parents (not to mention combatting food allergy-related bullying).
At least there are new choices every day for parents who have to think more carefully about their shopping lists. Like other Chobani products, the new entries will be free of artificial flavors, sweeteners, gluten, and soy. Meaning, many people with an allergy or intolerance will be able to polish off one of these dairy-free babies, worry-free.
The new line is already available in Kroger stores, with more chains coming, so no need to wait. It's great to see companies becoming more aware of allergy issues, and that schools are improving their protocols for looking out for such students as well.
Having to worry about your kid's health when they have limited food choices is hard enough. The increase in awareness around the commonality of food allergies is great news, and it's about time that a food allergy not be viewed as nothing more than a comic's punchline.
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