Food allergy advocacy groups call for Peter Rabbit movie boycott over ‘food allergy bullying’ scene

Parents call for Peter Rabbit movie boycott over 'food allergy bullying' scene
There are concerns over ‘food allergy bullying’ in the movie (Picture: Columbia Pictures)

Food allergy advocacy groups have been angered by scenes in the new Peter Rabbit movie.

Parents have also taken to Twitter to complain about a scene in the upcoming movie which sees a human suffering from a food allergy having the said food thrown at them.

The rabbits intentionally attack the human to provoke a reaction, which causes the person to suffer anaphylaxis.’

An advisory notice was published on the Kids With Food Allergies Foundation Facebook page with a warning, and read: ‘The new movie, Peter Rabbit, has a scene that may be disturbing to young viewers who have a food allergy. A character is intentionally attacked with his allergen, leading to anaphylaxis and the use of epinephrine. Parents should be aware of this before your children see the movie so you can talk with your child(ren) about it.

Parents call for Peter Rabbit movie boycott over 'food allergy bullying' scene
Peter Rabbit has caused some controversy (Picture: Columbia pictures)

‘KFA believes that food allergy “jokes” are harmful to our community. During a reaction, patients require the life-saving drug epinephrine and must go to the nearest hospital for follow-up treatment. The very real fear and anxiety that people experience during an allergic reaction (often referred to as an impending sense of doom) is a serious matter.

Parents call for Peter Rabbit movie boycott over 'food allergy bullying' scene
Elizabeth Debicki, Margot Robbie, James Corden, Rose Byrne, Domhnall Gleeson, Will Gluck star in the movie (Picture: Steve Granitz/WireImage)

It continued: ‘Making light of this condition hurts our members because it encourages the public not to take the risk of allergic reactions seriously, and this cavalier attitude may make them act in ways that could put an allergic person in danger.

‘We will keep you updated on our actions on this issue..’

The message has since had over 1,800 comments and 10,000 shares.

The movie stars Margot Robbie, Rose Byrne and Elizabeth Debicki.

In an open letter to Sony, Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America president Kenneth Mendez wrote: ‘The segment featured the intentional attack of the McGregor character with the food he is allergic to – the implication being that the rabbits wanted to kill or harm McGregor with this method.

‘The result is that McGregor experienced a severe allergic reaction, known as anaphylaxis, and treated himself with his epinephrine injection. Additionally, the segment makes light of the seriousness of food allergies and suggests that food allergies are ‘made up for attention’.’

The letter continues that food allergies are ‘not a punchline’.

Australian group Global Anaphylaxis Awareness and Inclusivity (Globalaai) has also since created a petition calling for an apology.

‘This mocks the seriousness of allergic disease and is heartbreakingly disrespectful to the families of those that have lost loved ones to anaphylaxis,’ it reads. So far it’s garnered 3,000 signatures.

I am beyond upset with @sonypictures & the movie Peter Rabbit. The movie promotes bullying others with food allergies to the point where the main characters purposefully cause another to go into anaphylactic reaction! How the hell is that funny?? #boycottpeterrabbit

❤Peachy (@PeachyKeen34) February 10, 2018

As a mother of a toddler allergic to several foods, I am disgusted that Sony would make a joke out of flicking an allergen at a food allergic individual. Doing so is felony aggravated assault! What kind of message does that scene send to kids?! #boycottpeterrabbit

— hydrogirl71 (@hydrogirl71) February 10, 2018

There is a scene in the movie when someone who has food allergies is intentionally targeted. food allergies are real & my son could DIE if he ate something he’s allergic to -It’s not something he asked for it’s just something he lives with educate yourself #boycottpeterrabbit

— tired mom of 3 (@angelaaragon51) February 10, 2018

Reps for the movie have been contacted for comment.

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