The parents of a 15-year-old girl who died from a severe allergic reaction after eating a baguette have said they are humbly accepting an OBE in her name.
Tanya and Nadim Ednan-Laperouse, who set up the Natasha Allergy Research Foundation in the name of their daughter, feel the award is a tribute to their child, who still inspires them every day.
Natasha Ednan-Laperouse, of Fulham, west London, died of anaphylaxis after unknowingly eating sesame contained in an artichoke, olive and tapenade baguette she had bought from Pret a Manger at Heathrow Airport.
She fell ill and collapsed on a flight to Nice on July 17 2016.
In a statement, her parents said: “We are humbled and honoured to accept these awards in the name of our beloved daughter Natasha.
“Natasha was a passionate believer in social justice and the bright torch that she carried for others inspires us every day.”
They hope their work will help save other lives. The honour is for their services to charity and for people with allergic disease.
The foundation aims to establish a research centre at the University of Southampton to find a cure for allergies.
Mr and Mrs Ednan-Laperouse hope it will support scientists to prevent “more unnecessary” deaths and hospitalisations through severe allergic reactions, and “ultimately we hope to help eradicate allergic disease from this planet”.
The foundation was set up to fund and harness allergy medical breakthroughs, support academic and industry research and develop new therapies that will offer hope for effective allergy treatments and work towards finding a cure.
The parents have also managed to win new protections for food allergy sufferers under the introduction of “Natasha’s Law”, which will require all businesses to include full ingredients labelling on pre-packaged food.
The legislation applies to England and Northern Ireland.
The couple said: “Natasha’s Law comes into force in October 2021, ending the legal loophole that cost our daughter her life.
“It will help save many other lives.”