Food allergies are a HUGE concern in restaurants—well in any place that sells food really.
Over the last several decades many more people seem to suffer from all sorts of new allergy issues.
Gluten is one of the most prolific of the allergies and many protocols have been put in place to combat it.
That’s why employees and employers are hyper vigilant when it comes to cross contamination.
And that vigilance can lead to some stress.
Our Redditor mothbun wanted to discuss her story for some feedback. So naturally she came to visit the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit.
“AITA for telling on my co-worker to our boss?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“I (34F[emale]) work in a bakery and we have a gluten free area and a regular bread area.”
“Due to lack of workers now, our boss assigned a few people to switch between the regular bread area and the gluten free area, with a mandatory ‘clean’ between switching – so, replacing all gloves, gowns, aprons, hair nets, washing hands, etc.”
“If the surface is not gluten free, the bread is not G[luten] F[ree], of course.”
“Anyway, I have noticed that my co-worker (38F) has been switching to gluten free without the cleaning process.”
“She just claps her hands (like a regular clap) to remove flour and moves on.”
“I tried to jokingly bring it to her attention (because I am not confrontational and lack self-esteem for the most part), but she told me ‘it’s not that big of a deal’ and to ‘get help,’ referring to my contamination O[bsessive] C[ompulsive] D[isorder].”
“Now, I don’t mind being called out if I’m in the wrong, but gluten free is gluten free for a reason, and I kept imagining a person coming in to buy a loaf of bread and ending up in a hospital or worse, and I just had to say it. :(“
“I don’t know what went on between the two of them, but since this morning, my co-worker has been giving me the evil eye and there is a new person assigned for the GF area.”
“AITA for telling on her?”
Redditors had no issue sharing their thoughts on this matter by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Redditors felt our OP was NOT the a**hole.
So let’s take a deep dive into everyone’s thoughts.
“NTA. Cleaning protocol for switching between GF area and non-GF are there for a reason!”
“People can have REAL medical consequences if they ingest gluten, so kudos to you for standing up for them!” ~ bukkubukku
“As someone with Celiac’s Disease, THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS!!”
“There are so many people that don’t take it seriously, and just think it’s part of some fad diet, but honestly just a small amount of cross-contamination can utterly screw my entire system for like a day and a half.” ~ seniorchikin
“I know someone with celiac who said they can’t even kiss someone else who has gluten on their breath.”
“Also that they don’t trust omission ‘crafted to remove gluten’ beer to get enough of it out.”
“(It’s made with barley and the gluten is chemically processed, there are some beers made from gluten free grains to begin with, Budweiser’s sorghum product Redbridge being the mainstream example, and hard cider being made from fruit could sidestep the issue.)” ~ AlanFromRochester
“My sister has coeliac disease.”
“During a Christmas visit to our mum one year she had a slice of ‘gluten free’ cake at a local cafe.”
“We think either it was incorrectly labelled, or contaminated by a dirty knife when it was cut.”
“Within 24 hours she had severe diarrhoea and vomiting, which lasted 2-3 days, which unfortunately included Christmas Day.” ~ naalbinding
“It’s so easy to get cross contaminated, which is why it’s good that OP told.”
“It could have been something as simple as someone opening a box of gluten donuts/a bag of flour etc near the coffee and a few flecks of gluten getting in it accidentally.”
“Anywhere that has coffee usually also has donuts or other gluten sweets.” ~ whattupmyknitta
“She is legitimately putting people’s lives at risk because she can’t be bothered to do an extra 20 second of cleaning.”
“Not to mention opening the business up for a massive lawsuit. boss deserves to know and discipline accordingly.”
“Even just within the building, imagine if you or a coworker sold a kid something and then watched them take a bite, only to collapse on the floor and get taken to hospital (or worse).”
“Do the rest of your coworkers deserve to live their entire lives haunted by that memory?”
“Yeah, extreme case, but what’s worse, an angry glare from a person knowingly putting people in that position or lifelong therapy for someone that didn’t even know what went wrong?”
“NTA whatsoever.” ~ roadkillroyal
“NTA. Someone potentially being harmed by the practice immediately overrides any sort of friendship/peer code to not ‘snitch’ on one another.”
“In fact, you attempted to solve the problem as a peer first and the feedback was not received well.”
“The professional thing to do after attempting to resolve it yourselves is to involve a higher up, which you did.”
“You were professional the entire time, your peer was professional 0% of the time.” ~ RealmEmpress
“I have celiac and if I had a reaction from your bread due to cross contamination (and we know pretty quick if there’s been contamination) I would never go back to your bakery.”
“So not only were you thinking about people’s health you were thinking about the business as a whole.”
“I would definitely tell other people looking for GF options to stay away from your bakery.”
“Definitely NTA!!” ~ ZestycloseEmu8964
“Honestly, I think you handled this so well that you should write it down to use in interviews for questions like ‘what would you do if you saw someone doing something wrong’, or ‘how do you handle conflict?'”
“You saw someone doing something very dangerous, tried to raise it with them directly and when they didn’t take any heed you went to your/their line manager who has the authority to force a change.” ~ eak-decks
“NTA. She’s lucky she has a job after doing something like that.”
“Cross contamination is a serious issue. If something had gone wrong, I’m guessing the restaurant could have been sued.”
“Does she care about food allergy protocols?”
“Does she wash her hands after touching raw eggs?” ~ socialdistraction
Gluten is no joke. And Reddit seems to have no issue applauding our OP.
Careful what you eat, it can kill if you’re not vigilant.