Bidfood supports The Natasha Clinical Trial

Bidfood has become a research founding partner of The Natasha Clinical Trial, contributing to a new study for people living with allergies.

The study aims to prove that everyday foods containing peanut or milk, taken under medical supervision, can be used as an alternative to expensive pharmaceutical drugs to desensitise patients.

The three-year oral immunotherapy trial is the first major study funded by The Natasha Allergy Research Foundation, the charity set up by the parents of Natasha Ednan-Laperouse who died aged 15 from a severe food allergic reaction.

The £2.2 million trial is being funded by a gift to the University of Southampton. Natasha’s Foundation has received generous donations from its research founding partners, along with fundraising and donations from the Foundation’s supporters.

Bidfood CEO Andrew Selley said: “We are incredibly proud to be a part of such important and potentially life-changing research that will not only help build confidence for those with severe allergies when eating out of home, but more importantly save countless lives.”

In addition to Bidfood, the research founding partners are: Greggs, Tesco, Just Eat, Co-op, Morrisons, KFC, Bakkavor, Sainsbury’s, Costa Coffee, Elior UK, Burger King, Pret A Manger, Lidl, Leon, Cooplands, and Uber Eats.

The trial will be led by researchers at the University of Southampton and University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust, partnering with Imperial College London (both World Allergy Organisation Centres of Excellence) together with University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, Newcastle University and Sheffield Children’s Hospital.

The study will recruit a total of 216 people between the ages of three and 23 with food allergy to cow’s milk and aged six and 23 with food allergy to peanut. Following an initial 12 months of desensitisation (carried out according to a standardised protocol under strict medical supervision), participants will be monitored for a further two years in order to report on longer-term safety and cost-effectiveness.

The aim is to bring the level of evidence to a point where oral immunotherapy trial using commercially available foods could be approved for use in the NHS to treat food-allergic patients most at risk of anaphylaxis.

Natasha’s parents Nadim and Tanya Ednan-Laperouse officially announced the trial. Tanya said: “We have been determined that Natasha’s death should not be in vain. Following the successful implementation of Natasha’s Law, which has brought new ingredient and allergen labelling, we are delighted to announce the first Natasha Clinical Trial.”

Nadim added: “This is a major first step in our mission to make food allergies history. The aim is to save lives and prevent serious hospitalisations by offering lifelong protection against severe allergic reactions to foods. We are delighted that a consortium of food businesses are supporting our work with donations that will help fund this study.”

Published Date: May 21, 2022
Category: Wholesale Industry News