Previous Post Next Post


Brought to you by

Proposed Airline Peanut Ban Cancelled

By helaineo |

The proposed airline peanut ban won’t be taking off any time soon.

Last month, the Federal Transportation Department announced it was soliciting comments from the public on a proposal to ban peanuts on airlines. It was an effort to protect the nation’s estimated 1.8 million nut allergy sufferers from accidental airborne contact with peanuts. For some sufferers, even contact with a minute amount of peanut dust is capable of triggering a life-threatening reaction.

But it turn out the bureaucrats who thought up the proposed peanut ban were exceeding their authority. According to published reports, Federal law prevents the Department of Transportation from instituting such restrictions without commissioning and publishing a peer-reviewed scientific paper demonstrating that those with peanut allergies could truly benefit from the change in policy.

There is no such study on peanuts planned at this time. Nonetheless, the federal government is still asking the public to chime in on the matter of peanuts vs. the friendly skies. It’s not clear, however, why they are bothering unless they believe that giving those suffering with nut allergies an opportunity to vent is a public service.

This is not the first time federal transportation authorities have attempted to cancel peanut service on airplanes.  A similar proposal was floated in the late 1990s, but retracted when an angry Congress threatened to cut the department’s budget if they did not back down from banning the nut.

A number of carriers, including Continental, Jet Blue and United no longer serve peanuts to their passengers though others, including Southwest and Delta, still offer flyers the controversial snack.

The proposed peanut ban always struck me as well intentioned but more than a bit impractical and hard to enforce. As airlines have cut back on everything from in-flight meals to beverage carts, more and more passengers have resorted to bringing their own food with them when they fly. I don’t know about you, but I found it hard to believe  already overworked security screeners were really going to spend time chasing down contraband legumes.  Besides, I would guess nuts are pretty easy to miss in a pre-boarding inspection in any case.

What do you think?

More Posts:

Are the Real Housewives Violating Child Labor Laws?

Real Housewives of New Jersey Sell Their Children’s Privacy for Peanuts

Model Adrianne Curry Bashes Breastfeeding on Twitter

Would You Buy Breastmilk Online?

The $369,000 Baby

Whatever Happened to Flextime?

Do Children Really Make Their Parents Unhappy?

David  After Dentist Family at $150,000 and Counting …

Photo: Katorisi

More on Babble

About helaineo



Helaine Olen's writing has been published by The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal,, and, where she is an associate editor. Her first book, Office Mate: The Guide to Finding True Love on the Job will be published this fall. She lives in Hastings-on-Hudson, New York.

« Go back to Mom

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, profile photo and other personal information you make public on Facebook (e.g., school, work, current city, age) will appear with your comment. Comments, together with personal information accompanying them, may be used on and other Babble media platforms. Learn More.

0 thoughts on “Proposed Airline Peanut Ban Cancelled

  1. bob says:

    Isn’t the whole point of the pre-boarding inspection to keep the nuts of the planes?

  2. LindaLou says:

    So, what is with that accompanying picture of GIANT peanuts ???

  3. Peggy says:

    Comments: It’s not necessary to ban peanut products carried on by other passengers. The trouble comes when peanuts are routinely served to almost every passenger on almost every flight. On Southwest airlines, there are peanuts between the seats, and crushed on the floor all over the place. The people most at risk from this are small children. My daughter had a reaction to a peanut she found between the seats when she was 2, even though she didn’t eat it, and had wheezing just from the dust when she was 5. If she’d put these things in her mouth, she could have died within 20 minutes. You can’t get lifesaving help fast enough when you’re 30,000 feet up. It’s a matter of odds. Kids at risk are a lot less likely to encounter peanuts in the purse of another passenger than they are to those on the floor and between seats when peanuts are routinely served.

  4. [...] Proposed Airline Peanut Ban Cancelled [...]

  5. [...] Proposed Airline Peanut Ban Cancelled [...]

  6. [...] Proposed Airline Peanut Ban Cancelled [...]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *.

Previous Post Next Post