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Das ECARF-Qualitätssiegel ist eine Auszeichnung für allergikerfreundliche Produkte und Dienstleistungen.
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Safe haven for allergy sufferers — Baabe, on Rügen, the first vacation destination for people with allergies

Thursday, 08. May 2008

Baabe and Berlin, May 8, 2008. Today, the European Centre for Allergy Research Foundation will award the Baltic Sea town Baabe, on the island Rügen, with its Seal of Quality for products and services suitable for allergic persons. The recognition of a whole community as allergy-friendly is unique in the world.

Allergies when travelling often present a problem. Those who suffer from allergies to animal hair, food, mites, or pollen can experience serious symptoms while away from home, reducing their safety and their enjoyment of the vacation. For the first time, a travel destination has risen to meet this challenge. Vacation rental homes, hotels, pensions, cafes, restaurants, bakeries, and supermarkets offer a wide range of products for allergy sufferers. Those with food allergies can find gluten-free and lactose-free groceries and prepared meals, as well as milk-free ice cream, in the supermarket. The local baker provides egg-free and nut-free baked goods. Those who are allergic to dust mites can relax in beds with mite-proof mattress covers. Because of its bracing climate, Baabe has a very low pollen count, making it ideal for people with pollen allergies.

A team of allergologists from the Allergy Centre Charite, on a visit to Baabe, were convinced that the community met all criteria for the certification. The certification process also included training sessions for employees and informational events for residents, businesses services. So far, 180 beds in vacation houses and three hotels have met all the ECARF criteria.

The services and offers in Baabe have been integrated so that allergic persons have many opportunities to enjoy their vacation. Aside from the hotels and restaurants which have already been certified by ECARF, other cafes and bistros in Baabe are offering special foods for allergic persons, such as milk-free ice cream.

The project"Allergy-friendly Community Baabe" was realized through a cooperation between the spa administration in Baabe and ECARF, under the leadership of Professor Torsten Zuberbier. It upholds the motto of the foundation: "Quality of life despite allergies." The goal of the foundation, naturally, is the improve the quality of life for persons suffering from allergies.

The ideal of an allergy-free life can, unfortunately, never be fully achieved. Pollen is carried over whole continents by the wind, and crops, for example, can come into contact with other plants in the field and therefore pick up allergens.

The seal symbolizes practical improvements. Even small changes can make a large difference in the quality of life of an allergic person.

Allergic persons should always carry medication with them. This is especially important for emergency medication for food allergies. Medical treatment and advice is of course available in Baabe. Yet every person with an allergy should know that freedom from allergies can never be guaranteed, neither at home nr on vacation. ECARF cannot be held responsible for any allergic complaints.

The idea for this project was developed under the framework of the Consumer Protection Conference, under the leadership of Minister Seehofer. It is a model project which is scientifically monitored and continually under development.

Press photo

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