NEW! Podcast – check out the Food Allergy FastPass

Posted on : 05-12-2015 | By : Allergy Free Mouse | In : News, Podcast

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Food Allergy FastPass podcast for Disney fansWe teamed up with the Larry and Amy, who host the Disney Food Allergy Group on Facebook, to create a new Disney Food Allergy podcast. In the first episode, you learn more about Larry and Amy, plus Lizzie and Jeff (us) while we share some of our favorite Disney food allergy quick service and table service dining experiences, along with some tips for dining at Disney World with food allergies.

Find the Food Allergy FastPass podcast here!

 

Mylan EpiPen on Location at Disney Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

Posted on : 02-06-2015 | By : Allergy Free Mouse | In : Events, Fun, News

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Walt Disney World
Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

EpiPen® On Location is coming to Walt Disney World’s Epcot International Food and Wine Festival this fall, including live chef demonstrations on October 2 – 4.  This will be an exciting addition to the festival for those of us with food allergies in our families.  We don’t usually attend, since it’s a lot of food sampling that our daughter cannot have. But this year, we are beyond excited about the food allergy chef demonstrations.

The EpiPen® On Location program is a national call-to-action for those living with potentially life-threatening (severe) allergies and their caregivers to understand the importance of avoiding allergic triggers and having access to two epinephrine auto-injectors, such as EpiPen® (epinephrine injection) Auto-Injectors, at all times — whether at home, school, work or on vacation.

Ambassadors Nina Garcia, Chef Amanda Freitag and Auggie Maturo

Ambassadors Nina Garcia, Chef Amanda Freitag and Auggie Maturo

EpiPen® On Location Program Ambassadors Chef Amanda Freitag and “Girl Meets World” actor Auggie Maturo will be at the festival sharing their stories and tips for food allergies.

More about the event can be found at the EpiPen On Location website.

Mylan recently announced a multi-year strategic alliance agreement with Walt Disney Parks and Resorts to help enhance access to EpiPen® Auto-Injectors and increase awareness of anaphylaxis, a life-threatening (severe) allergic reaction. EpiPens are now available at all Disney Parks and Disney Cruise Lines ships.

Please note, you will need admission to Epcot to attend the International Food and Wine Festival. Contact PixieLizzie.com for tickets and accommodations and to learn more about how to visit Disney with your food allergy.

Find Enjoy Life Foods at Disney World

Posted on : 24-11-2014 | By : Allergy Free Mouse | In : News

Find Enjoy Life at Disney World

Click for larger view

It’s always great to find Enjoy Life products at Disney World, either on sale or as a go-to dessert at a restaurant.

Enjoy Life Foods shared this with us this weekend. If you don’t see them, or they aren’t offered, just ask your server, chef or Cast Member.

Epi-Pens now available in Disney Parks and Disney Cruise Ships

Posted on : 08-11-2014 | By : Allergy Free Mouse | In : News

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Epi-Pen locations at Disney World

Epi-Pen location for Hollywood Studios – Click for a larger view

Really exciting news for those with food allergies, and other life-threatening allergies. Mylan, the maker of Epi-Pen, contacted us today to share this information with our readers. They hope to have them available by the end of November at Disney Parks and by the end of the year on Disney Cruise Lines.

We’re excited to announce that Mylan Inc. has entered into a multi-year strategic alliance agreement with Walt Disney Parks and Resorts to help enhance access to EpiPen® (epinephrine) and EpiPen Jr® (epinephrine) Auto-Injectors and increase awareness of anaphylaxis, a life-threatening (severe) allergic reaction.

Each year, millions of guests visit Walt Disney Parks and Resorts in the U.S. — many of whom are living with and/or managing severe allergies — so for us, this alliance was the perfect fit.

As you know, food allergies are on the rise and continue to be a serious health issue in America. To date, 46 states have passed policies that allow/require schools to maintain undesignated epinephrine auto-injectors for those who may experience anaphylaxis. Our hope is that the positive trend we have seen in the school setting will expand to other public settings.

The corporate alliance between Mylan and Disney will:

• Provide updated maps in Disney’s domestic theme parks and cruise ships, as well as updated signage in parks, highlighting locations of EpiPen and EpiPen Jr Auto-Injectors.

• Introduce educational resources designed to increase awareness of and preparedness for severe allergic reactions. For those living with potentially life-threatening (severe) allergies, it’s critical to have an action plan in place before booking a getaway. Like life, severe allergic reactions are unpredictable:

• Anaphylaxis can progress quickly and without warning.

• Clinical guidelines state that epinephrine is the first-line treatment for anaphylaxis, making access critical.

• Families managing known severe allergies are encouraged to follow their individual anaphylaxis action plan, which includes 1) avoiding known allergens, 2) recognizing the signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis, 3) having access to two epinephrine auto-injectors at all times, such as EpiPen Auto-Injector, and 4) seeking immediate emergency medical care should anaphylaxis occur.

The product made available at the parks is not intended to replace a person’s individual emergency anaphylaxis treatment.

It looks as if Disney plans to make them available in the First Aid stations located throughout the parks. Here is a list of Disney World first aid locations. However, if you ever feel you are have an allergic reaction and you don’t know where to find nearest first aid location or it is not nearby, contact a Cast Member and they will have medical personnel come to you. They are very fast and can probably find you quicker than you can walk across the park to find first aid.

The press release is pasted below and available on the EpiPen Auto-Injector media room.

Mylan Signs Strategic Alliance Agreement with Walt Disney Parks and Resorts to Enhance Access to EpiPen® (epinephrine) Auto-Injectors

EpiPen® Auto-Injector Locations Designated on Updated Guide Maps and Signage

New Multi-year Alliance to Increase Anaphylaxis Awareness through Multiple Educational Initiatives

PITTSBURGH – Nov. 7, 2014 – Mylan Inc. (Nasdaq: MYL) today announced it has signed a multi-year strategic alliance agreement with Walt Disney Parks and Resorts to help increase awareness of anaphylaxis, a life-threatening (severe) allergic reaction. The agreement includes updated maps in Disney’s domestic theme parks and on its cruise ships as well as updated signage in the parks that highlight locations with EpiPen® (epinephrine) and EpiPen Jr® (epinephrine) Auto-Injectors. Over time, the companies also will introduce a variety of educational resources designed to increase awareness of and preparedness for severe allergic reactions.

EpiPen® locations will roll out at Disney parks and on cruise ships beginning in late 2014. In addition to emergency medical services (EMS), nurses trained to administer EpiPen Auto-Injectors are available during First Aid station operating hours to assist guests experiencing a severe allergic reaction. To help guests identify EpiPen locations, Disney’s guide maps will now include an EpiPen Auto-Injector symbol and new signage at First Aid stations.

“Mylan’s mission is to provide the world’s 7 billion people access to high quality medicine and set new standards in health care. In support of this mission, we are committed to enhancing access to EpiPen Auto-Injectors and to increasing awareness of anaphylaxis. Like life, severe allergic reactions are unpredictable, so people need to be prepared,” said Mylan CEO Heather Bresch. “We are very proud to be working with Disney, which already has a strong reputation for meeting the needs of people managing severe allergies, and believe we can further raise awareness of anaphylaxis through this collaboration and our joint commitment to education.”

Anaphylaxis is unpredictable, and can progress quickly and without warning. Clinical guidelines state that epinephrine is the first-line treatment when anaphylaxis occurs, making access critical. For those with a known risk, it is important to be prepared with an anaphylaxis action plan that includes 1) avoiding known allergens, 2) recognizing the signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis, 3) having immediate access to two epinephrine auto-injectors, such as EpiPen Auto-Injector, and 4) seeking immediate emergency medical care should anaphylaxis occur.

“For our guests who live with severe allergies every day, identifying EpiPen locations is an additional tool they’ll have for their anaphylaxis management plan,” said Dr. Pamela Hymel, chief medical officer for Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. “This new strategic alliance will help raise awareness of EpiPen locations so that our Guests with severe allergies may have the best possible experience at our parks and on our cruise ships.”

Families managing known severe allergies are encouraged to follow their individual anaphylaxis action plans and carry their epinephrine auto-injectors with them at all times.

 

Our forums are open again – Ask anything!

Posted on : 04-01-2014 | By : Allergy Free Mouse | In : News

Questions about Disney and Food AllergiesThe forums are open again. Feel free to ask anything about Disney and food allergies. If we can’t help, someone else probably can. Find the on the navigation above, or right here!

 

Getting back to Disney

Posted on : 06-10-2013 | By : Allergy Free Mouse | In : News

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Food allergies at Disney WorldIt’s been a crazy few months for us. We decided to move 5 months ago and managed to sell our house in a tough market. Moves are never easy, but we made the move in time to start our daughter in school. Next up, Liz needed to have surgery, which became our priority over the past 6 weeks. Everything is progressing very well, but it’s been extremely difficult to update the website on a regular basis since she is the creative source for our website, which has become a labor of love.

Now we’re back. Our next Disney trip is in late November and we’ve also booked another Disney Cruise in April.

And we’re going to be posting more of our reviews, and we’re ready for more guest reviews and quick reviews from our readers.

 

March/April Winner

Posted on : 02-05-2013 | By : Allergy Free Mouse | In : News

Disney Gift Card winnerWe just sent a $25 Disney Gift Card to Maria in New Hampshire, who sent us this Earl of Sandwich review.

Her entry was randomly drawn from all of the Disney food allergy reviews we received from readers, some of whom sent us multiple reviews.

We’re going to continue the contest for May!

Every quick review you send will become an entry for the random drawing, so please share as many as possible. It really helps other people with food allergies plan their Disney vacation.

We occasionally receive a few that we can’t really consider as reviews. We like to share the full experience; tell us about the restaurant, why you chose it and about the service, especially as it relates to food allergies. Include  a picture, if you want. If you send us a review that isn’t about a great experience, please include as many details as possible. We occasionally receive reviews that are mediocre or even bad, however, we need to know the details in order to help learn from the experience. We want the good and the bad reviews, but details make the difference and help the next reader make their plans.

Send us your Disney food allergy quick reviews and you could be our next winner!

The drawing will occur in early June and we’ll publish the winner online again.

 

AllergyFreeMouse.com is 2 today!

Posted on : 17-04-2013 | By : Allergy Free Mouse | In : Fun, News

AllergyFreeMouse.com is 2 today!It’s hard to believe it’s been 2 years now since we first launched AllergyFreeMouse.com. It’s been a lot of work, but a whole lot of fun, too, as most Disney themed websites are. But most of all, and the biggest reason we keep doing it, it has been extremely rewarding to know we’ve helped other families with food allergies discover just how great Disney can be.

We first started the website for 2 reasons:

  1. Even with Disney’s help (via the fabulous Special Diets team) and food handling processes, it was still incredibly difficult to plan a Disney World trip. In fact, it’s difficult to plan without the added complication of a food allergy.
  2. Disney doesn’t promote their Special Diets process. So many of us with food allergies aren’t even aware that Disney can help you take a true vacation, in ways no other vacation destination can. We still encounter people in the park who either don’t know about it or didn’t find out until they arrived!
Now that we’ve started, we can’t stop. Every day, more and more of you visit to plan your first or next trip, and then return after the trip to share your experiences with others. It’s become a true labor of love that our family gives to the food allergy and intolerance community — and the community helps us give back.

We’d love to hear more from you, even if it’s just to say “Hi” on our Contact form, Forum, Facebook, Twitter or Google+.

In lieu of gifts, please send us your Disney food allergy dining experiences (good or bad) and food allergy tips.

FASTPASS for dining – New automation with options for food allergies

Posted on : 07-01-2013 | By : Allergy Free Mouse | In : Misc, News

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Disney FASTPASS dining with food allergy options

Disney is testing a new FASTPASS type system for dining reservations. In a way, this almost turns a dine-in restaurant into a quick service restaurant. It allows you to pick a time, order your food and, when you arrive, you are allowed right into the dining room and your food is delivered to your table. They tested this briefly at Be Our Guest and said it was a big success.

This is not the big news, though.

Back in February of 2012, Disney tested interactive menus at the Hollywood Brown Derby in Hollywood Studios. And, if you specified a food allergy, the menu eliminated those foods that contained your allergen. This was very limiting for some diners. In the end, if you had a food allergy, you would speak to chef as normal, which was much more reassuring anyway. The interactive menu simply presented some options to make you aware of the options the chef might offer.

So, the new system may be a combination of the “FASTPASS dining” and the interactive menu, with one key difference; instead of removing the menu items that contain your food allergen, it can keep those items with ingredient substitutions. This is much better than the Brown Derby test since it gives you even more options. However, like the Brown Derby scenario, you will still speak to a chef, which is the protocol for all dine-in restaurants.

According to the food service manager we spoke to, this is still very preliminary and is about to begin testing, along with many new automation options, like FASTPASS+, testing now. We can’t wait to give it a try! Let us know if you get to participate.

UPDATE: After a Facebook comment, I thought I should clarify one point. In the BOG test, you had the option to order your food ahead of time if you knew exactly what you wanted. It wasn’t a requirement of the service. The reservation priority is a big seller since, especially at BOG, there has been quite a wait, even with a reservation time.

Big news! Dole Whips are now dairy free, maybe

Posted on : 03-01-2013 | By : Allergy Free Mouse | In : Misc, News

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Visit this page for the latest info on Dole Whip at Disney World.

Dole Whip - Now dairy-free

We’re still researching this, but a reader notified us of Dole pineapple soft serve ingredient changes on the Precision Foods website. Basically, they have reformulated it removing the sodium caseinate (a derivative of the milk protein) which now qualifies it as truly dairy-free, lactose-free and gluten-free, as well as free of the other food allergy ingredients in the “big 8 food allergens” by the FDA. In fact, the ingredients also state it is vegan.

Here is the latest Pineapple Dole Whip ingredient list. Dole tells us this also applies to the orange soft serve, too.

However, while the ingredients are dairy free, Disney Special Diets tells us that it may be served on the same equipment as the vanilla soft serve, which does contain dairy. Therefore, cross-contamination is a potential hazard. Additionally, Aloha Isle may not have the necessary preparation space to prevent cross-contamination.

UPDATE: The equipment used to dispense the Dole Whip product has a nozzle for each flavor. However, while this is good news, you should still mention your food allergies to the Cast Member at the Aloha Isle, making sure they take precautions to avoid cross contamination. You might even request a fresh cup from an unopened package.

Again, proceed with caution if you are allergic to dairy and go with your gut instinct if you feel uncomfortable — walk away, it’s just a Dole Whip.

If you have any firsthand experience and can let us know, please contact us.