Decorating By apetricek Updated 7 Jul 2008 , 11:57pm by Doug

apetricek Posted 7 Jul 2008 , 8:22pm
post #1 of 11

Hi guys just wondered if any of you have waivers for customers to sign? By this I mean for those with the "nut allergy", and other allergies. I have an upcoming cake that is for a child that is allergic to ALL dairy, eggs, and chocolate. I found a recipe to use on here that is a Vegan one, and I also sent the mother an ingredients lists of other things that I will be using, ex. fondant, gel paste, etc. I told her that I would prefer her to sign a waiver (just to cover myself, which she is FINE with). My question is that do you guys have these, any examples???? I know I had the dreaded "nut allergy" before. Although I do have clearly listed on my website that my kitchen is not peanut/nut free, but of course me being the ODC person that I am, I scrubbed everything top to bottom with bleach before I did that cake. I will do the same with this upcoming one too. I explained to her that my mixer, bowls, pans, and tools have come in contact with those items, and even though they have been heavily washed, there may still in fact be traces. I really was hesitant about doing this cake, but I thought it would be a great opportunity to expand and offer this service, for those allergy suffers...so any suggestions I would LOVE, sorry for rambling on and on! THanks ALL! icon_biggrin.gif

10 replies
BlakesCakes Posted 7 Jul 2008 , 10:19pm
post #2 of 11

I simply refuse to put myself in this situation. To me, it's just not worth the grief, time, or peace of mind.

I know how hard it is for food allergic people to find bakers who are really equipped to do those types of cakes, but I just accept that my kitchen has ingredients in it that could cause a severe, life threatening reaction and so I just can't offer that type of item.

I think that the threat of cross contamination is just too great. I firmly believe that if someone had a reaction, the first place they would look to place blame would be my cake. I can't put a virtual stranger at risk and I can't put myself and my family's well being at risk, either.

Lawyers are too expensive to use, even to defend yourself against a baseless lawsuit. A signed waiver will never protect you, your home, or your assets against a good lawyer, especially if the "victim" is a child.

Sorry if my response is a bit scarey, but so is the alternative........


FromScratch Posted 7 Jul 2008 , 10:42pm
post #3 of 11

I won't put myself in that situation either. Unless you have a completely different set of tools and equipment for each allergy.. you cannot make allergenic foods. Especially with some allergies like peanuts.. even traces of the ofending food can bring horrible consequence. My friend's son is so allergic to peanuts that if he comes into contact with even the smallest trace he has a reaction. I pass on these cakes. Bleach is great, but it's not going to guarantee that all traces are removed.

tcbalgord Posted 7 Jul 2008 , 10:43pm
post #4 of 11

Now I know some of you all will grunt and gripe about what I am going to say, however, I am going to say it anyways.
I ONLY do cakes for family and friends, and generally they pay for the ingredients... now I MAKE them sign a waiver if the cake the want is copy righted. I never thought about allergies, but you I think you are safe, and you have covered yourself well, by sending her the list ahead of time.
Good luck to you!!

Btw, I read it on here someplace that a waiver is a good idea for copyrighted stuff; so that the customer understands that it is illegal and they are taking full responsibility.

FromScratch Posted 7 Jul 2008 , 10:49pm
post #5 of 11

The list is great, but the problem is that sometimes things that aren't on the list will get in the food. Traces of butter on the mixer or the spatula or the counter.. they can get into foods and I know it sounds crazy, but sometimes that's all it takes.

And also.. why make them sign a waiver if the cake is copyrighted?? That won't protect you in anyway if you are caught making them for sale.. and unfortunately "for sale" includes accepting the ingredients to make them.

apetricek Posted 7 Jul 2008 , 11:22pm
post #6 of 11

thanks for all your input so far, now here is the hard part....the lady is SO excited that I was willing to take on the cake, now how do I "dump"her? I am honestly afraid of making this cake...she is giving me the ingredients such as the safe butter, and milk to use...

TC123 Posted 7 Jul 2008 , 11:23pm
post #7 of 11

Hi. Food allergies are very risky... I had a friend ask me if I would bake her daughter's 2nd birthday cake. This little girl seems to be allergic to just about everything! But you'd never know it. She's just as happy as could be!!!! Anyway, my friend was going to bring me everything: ingredients, bowls, pans, decorator bags, etc. Everything I would need to do it except for the oven! I'll be honest, though, the more she said she was going to bring, the more nervous I got about it! I wound up not doing it, mostly out of fear that I'd do SOMETHING (no matter how innocent!) that would expose her to an allergy, and my friend was understanding about it. I ended up doing her other daughter's birthday cake shortly thereafter.

I understand the desire to offer cakes and such to people with allergies, but I wouldn't be able to deal with it very well if something happened because of something I made (knowing there was an allergy involved). Case in point... My father is allergic to peanuts. And I have NEVER, nor will I EVER, bake him a cake, pie, cookie, etc. (He's perfectly happy with Mrs. Smith's apple pie! icon_wink.gif )

If you really want to pursue this, maybe you could query bakeries that offer treats for those with allergies. See what they do, how they do it, who they order supplies from, what forms they have customers sign, etc.

I do wish you the best of luck and success with your endeavors!!!

FromScratch Posted 7 Jul 2008 , 11:28pm
post #8 of 11

I guess it depends on just HOW allergic the girl is. Are we talking she will go into severe anaphalaxis or she will just get hives?

I am more leary of nut allergies, but I flat out tell people that I won't promise allergenic foods. If the mom is okay with the level of risk and you can get her to sign something to that effect then I highly doubt you are looking at someone who is looking to sue you. I would go out on get some new spatulas and only use disposable piping bags.

Talk to the mom and find out what's up. Ask her just how allergic her child is to these products and what her reactions are. If it's severe then I would tell her that you cannot in good faith promise her that your cake will be safe for her shild to eat. I am sure she as a parent knows the risks to her child. I would even give her the recipes you found. Maybe she can make something for her if you can't.

apetricek Posted 7 Jul 2008 , 11:38pm
post #9 of 11

From talking to them I don't think it is a life threatening allergy...I found a Vegan cake, and icing recipe so I know that is dairy free. I emailed her them both and she gave it the ok, which I saved the email to have as my proof. She wants all fondant, so I emailed her the satin ice ingredients and she also oked them. Like I said she will give me the butter and milk to use, and was willing to get anything else that I would need. I fully explained to them my kitchen situation, and they were completely fine with it, and had no problem signing the waiver. They are good friends of a very loyal customer of mine, so I also don't think they are looking for the sue factor. I will get some new tools, tips (can always use them), and I only use disposible bags anyway, since I can't be bothered washing them...lazy like that! The fondant is brand new, so I know it hasn't been contaminated... I also have a second mixer that I don't normally use, so I think I will use that one just to be on the safe side. THanks again for all your suggestions, I will keep you posted...

Carolynlovescake Posted 7 Jul 2008 , 11:47pm
post #10 of 11

If anyone asks about allergy free kitchen I am clear that it's not. I even label every single box and cake board going out "this cake can not be guaranteed to be allergy free. If you have a food allergy please contact me to verify ingredients".

I will refer them to local bakeries who might be able to help.

My previous bakery I baked at we had 3 kitchens... one that was for all foods, one that was nut allergy friendly, and another that was sugar free.

They all three were equally busy because we were known for our ability and set up to offer speciality orders for nut allergies and anyone who was a diabetic.

As for the copyright waiver, chances are t's not going to hold up in court. In the eyes of a lawyer that means you know enough about it to not reproduce it but choose to do so. They won't be going after the person signing the waiver they will go after you because it's you that created it.

Doug Posted 7 Jul 2008 , 11:57pm
post #11 of 11

my wavier --

my hand >> "bye, bye"

I flat out refuse to do any allergy free/special dietary needs cakes.

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