Cookware, Bakeware Puts Focus On Food Allergies

Color-coated cookware and bakeware has been viewed as a home décor or personality choice of the consumer in recent years, however, it seems as if there is yet another reason consumers are turning towards colored pieces in the kitchen — they are easily identified when preparing meals for those with food allergies.

A study done by the Food Allergy Research and Education foundation found that more than 32 million people are affected by a food allergy or intolerance. The foundation said that equates to 1 in 10 adults and 1 in 13 children.

Consumers have started using color-coated cookware and bakeware to avoid cross-contamination while also being able to create several versions of meals all at once, saving time.

“Offering different colors of cookware and utensils allows consumers to identify which pans and gadgets are to be used for specific members of the household with food allergies. For instance, a teal pan could be for a family member with a nut allergy, so everyone in the household knows not to cook any nut products in that pan,” said Joshua Melzer, vp/marketing and communications, Epoca International, which manufactures the Ecolution line of color coated cookware.

USA Pan noticed this trend taking hold several years ago and launched its Allergy ID set of baking pans in 2018. John Bundy, director of USA Pan, said that the line has become a solution to those who have to deal with food allergies on a daily basis.

“We use a lavender color and it’s an immediate red flag to those cooking at home that only certain things should go on that pan. It helps to ensure no cross-contamination and makes it easy for everyone in the household who uses the kitchen to easily identify the pan because of its color,” he said.

Vendors noted that although the cookware is simply colored differently, it still has the same cooking and baking attributes.

“Besides the benefits of colored cookware, offering cookware that is dishwasher safe allows for sterilization of pans that will get rid of potential allergens before cooking the next meal,” Melzer said.

Bundy said that the coatings on the Allergy ID pans are the same as the company’s metal bakeware, which are designed for easy release, durability and quick cleanup. “We always look for ways to make cooking and baking more efficient for the consumer, but between the nonstick coating and the color, we feel as if the Allergy ID pans really help with ease of use in the kitchen,” he said.

Ravin Gandhi, CEO of GMM Non- Stick Coatings, said that he has continued to see more manufacturers bring up this angle when working with the coatings company to develop new products.

“Using colors as a way to ensure no food contamination as it relates to allergies is a very smart and novel use of coating colors and is evidence of the ways that our clients use coatings to solve consumer problems, especially those that are health and safety focused,” he said. “The independent housewares retailers are doing really well with telling this story and have been really successful with it,” Bundy said.