5 Reasons to Include Allergen Info in Your Restaurant’s Digital Menu

As the restaurant industry embraces technological advancements, digital menus have emerged as a significant innovation that revolutionizes the way customers interact with food options. However, amidst this digital transformation, it is crucial for restaurants to recognize the importance of including allergen information on their digital menus.

Allergens are food substances that can trigger an allergic reaction in certain individuals. These reactions can range from mild symptoms like itching and hives to severe and potentially life-threatening responses such as anaphylaxis. Common allergens found in food include nuts, gluten – contained in wheat, barley, and rye, dairy, shellfish, eggs, and soy. It is important to note that allergies can vary greatly from person to person, with individuals having different sensitivities and reactions to specific allergens.

For example, someone with a nut allergy may experience severe allergic reactions if they consume even a small amount of nuts or products that contain traces of nuts. Similarly, individuals with gluten intolerance or celiac disease may experience digestive discomfort or other adverse effects if they consume gluten-containing ingredients. By providing clear and accurate allergen information on digital menus, restaurants empower customers to make informed choices and avoid potential allergens that could endanger their health.

Generally speaking, adding allergen information on restaurant digital menus is not just beneficial, but vital for the well-being of customers and the success of the establishment.

In this blog, we will explore the benefits of including allergen information on restaurant digital menus in more detail, highlighting how it ensures customer safety, promotes transparency, caters to diverse dietary needs, and facilitates compliance with legal requirements.

What Allergens Should You Add In Your Digital Menu?

  1. Milk: Include this for dairy-containing items.
  2. Eggs: Important for dishes with eggs or egg-based ingredients.
  3. Peanuts: Relevant for dishes containing peanuts or peanut products.
  4. Tree Nuts: Include if your menu features almonds, cashews, walnuts, etc.
  5. Soy: Necessary for soy-based ingredients or soy derivatives.
  6. Wheat: Include for items with wheat flour or gluten.
  7. Fish: Vital for seafood dishes.
  8. Shellfish: Important for crustaceans like shrimp, crab, and lobster.
  9. Sesame: Include for items containing sesame seeds.
  10. Mustard: Relevant for dishes with mustard or mustard seeds.
  11. Sulfites: If used as a preservative, include this for certain wines and dried fruits.
  12. Celery: Include for dishes containing celery or celery salts.

Top 5 Reasons Why Your Restaurant’s Digital Menu Should Include Allergen Information

Other than the ethical part of it, there are several reasons why you should strive to mark all food allergens in your menu. They include:

Ensuring Customer Safety

The most compelling reason to include allergen markers on restaurant digital menus is to prioritize customer safety. Allergies and dietary restrictions are becoming increasingly prevalent with over 20 million people in Europe alone suffering from one or more forms of food allergies. By providing clear and accurate allergen markers, restaurants can help customers make informed choices about the food they consume, minimizing the risk of an allergic reaction.

Promoting Transparency and Trust

Incorporating allergen information on digital menus demonstrates a commitment to transparency and builds trust with customers. When diners can easily access comprehensive details about the ingredients and potential allergens in each dish, they feel reassured that the restaurant takes their dietary needs seriously. This transparency fosters a positive dining experience and encourages customers to return, knowing that their well-being is a priority.

Catering to a Diverse Customer Base

Restaurants are increasingly serving customers with diverse dietary requirements, including those who follow specific diets due to health concerns, religious beliefs, or ethical choices. By providing allergen and item characteristic markers on digital menus, restaurants can cater to this diverse customer base effectively. Whether someone is vegetarian, vegan, gluten-intolerant, or allergic to certain ingredients, clear allergen labeling empowers them to make choices that align with their dietary needs, fostering inclusivity and broadening the restaurant’s appeal.

Complying with Legal Requirements

In many countries, including the United States and several European nations, there are strict regulations regarding the provision of allergen information in food establishments. Failure to comply with these regulations can result in legal consequences and damage a restaurant’s reputation. Incorporating allergen markers on digital menus ensures compliance with legal requirements and demonstrates commitment to adhere to industry standards.

Streamlining Staff Communication

Including allergen markers on digital menus streamlines communication between customers and restaurant staff. By making this information readily available, customers can independently identify suitable dishes, reducing the need for frequent inquiries or consultations with servers. This efficiency allows staff members to focus on providing excellent service and attending to other customer needs, enhancing the overall dining experience.

How To Add Allergen Markers and Item Characteristics to Your Digital Menu

Digital menu systems allow restaurant owners and managers to enhance their menus in a variety of ways. In addition to indicating allergens, they can also label dishes with attributes like Halal, spicy, vegetarian, and vegan. By integrating these features, restaurants can better accommodate diverse dietary preferences and constraints, ensuring a more holistic dining experience for all customers.

Here’s a simple guide to adding allergen markers and food properties to your menu items:

  1. Login to your restaurant’s ordering system and access your menu listings.
  2. Select the item you would like to update and click on the edit button next to the item name
  3. Scroll through the item details to find the “Features” section and click to open it
  4. Check the appropriate checkboxes to add the corresponding characteristics to the item and save

To learn more, see how to item characteristics and allergen information in GonnaOrder’s platform..

Adding Allergen Markers to a Menu Item
Setting allergen information and offer characteristics
How Allergen Markers Appear on a GonnaOrder Store Menu
Setting allergen information and offer characteristics


Incorporating allergen information on restaurant digital menus is not merely a choice but an ethical obligation. By adding allergen markers, restaurants prioritize customer safety, build trust, cater to diverse dietary needs, comply with legal requirements, and streamline staff communication. Embracing technology to ensure easy access to this information demonstrates a commitment to providing a welcoming and inclusive dining experience for all.

With allergies and dietary restrictions on the rise, the inclusion of allergen information on digital menus has become an essential aspect of responsible and customer-centric restaurant operations.

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