Thursday, July 15, 2010
Nut-Free School Fundraising Programs and Options
It's an interesting question that was just posted on the PTOToday.com website:
What are the peanut free fundraisers out there?
Well, as a nationwide fundraising company, we have 2 main fundraisers that are responsible for the vast majority of fundraising revenue in the fall. They are a Fall Gift Catalog Fundraiser and a Frozen Cookie Dough fundraiser.
Both of these heavy-hitters are not nut-free. The plants that manufacture the chocolates in the catalog as well as the cookies do process them in a facility that also processes nuts. But...
The thing about a fall fundraising gift catalog is that it has 160 plus items, only a small number of these are food items. We believe that someone who can't eat peanuts can find many other interesting items that have nothing to do with food such as candles, gift items, calendars, magazines and jewelry. A fall fundraising gift catalog should remain an option for anyone regardless of food allergies as long as they avoid products that are not safe for them and purchase alternatives.
If you have a child with allergies so acute that you've asked parents not to eat peanut butter at home before school find out if they would have a problem with students having individually bagged orders containing some boxes of shrink-wrapped chocolates around. I don't think this poses a problem but if you have an extreme case to take into consideration, read on.
If you're trying to avoid peanuts, frozen cookie dough brochures will not be for you because as far as I know, any program available nationwide includes nuts.
The other fundraiser available that is nut-free is flower bulbs. A good flower bulb fundraiser (which are available in fall or spring) are both excellent options as a replacement for selling chocolates. Ask us if you would like to use this because it's really a great program! To the best of my knowledge there is no allergy risk with flower bulbs.
There is a post related to this on the PTOToday.com messageboard if you'd like to take a look at the post and list of peanut-free school fundraisers and nut free school fundraisers.
In the end, it may be better to find an alternative product to sell such as a fall gift catalog, flower brochure, jewelry brochure, magazines or maybe throw an event such as an auction.
The options available for peanut-free school fundraisers and nut-free school fundraisers just don't seem to be as readily available as it would seem given the apparent rise in peanut allergies.
Not selling chocolate may just be the answer you're after if you want to fundraise without the risk.