THE tragic and avoidable death of 15-year-old Natasha Ednan-Laperouse from a catastrophic allergic reaction to a shop-bought baguette was hailed as "watershed moment" in the fight for safer labelling laws.

The terrifying circumstances of the London teenager's case propelled the issue onto front pages all over the UK. It also underlined the dangers those with potentially deadly allergies face daily from a public and food industry that has not always taken the issue seriously enough.

Now her mother has spoken of the family's hopes that a research fund set up in her memory will help lead to a cure and train more allergy specialists amid chronic shortages in the NHS.

READ MORE: New food allergy alert service launched in Scotland as survey finds one in six Scots afffected

Natasha's parents, Nadim and Tanya Ednan-Laperouse, are in Scotland for the first time this weekend to raise awareness of their work at the Allergy and Free From Show in Glasgow's Scottish Exhibition Centre.

Speaking to the Herald ahead of the event, Mrs Ednan Laperouse, 52, said they were inundated with "lots of people wanting to talk to us" when they visited similar conferences in England.

She said: "The recurring theme from people was fear, which is awful. The fear is that as hard as they're trying to minimise the risks for themselves or their children, they don't feel it's enough because other people don't understand the severity of what they or their children are going through and they're put in danger regularly."

Natasha's allergies emerged when she was an infant, initially when she suffered an anaphylactic shock on holiday after eating some banana for the first time.

A second life-threatening reaction followed when her mother tried to wean her onto formula baby milk for the first time after being reassured by medics that there was no danger.

On a third occasion, foreshadowing the tragedy to come, she went into shock after eating a breadstick with sesame seeds on it at her grandmother's house. A bad reaction to a supermarket meal, aged five, was the only other incident.

"After that there was nothing, we were so so careful," said Mrs Ednan Laperouse. "There's this idea that teenagers with allergies are more likely to take risk, but I really would dispel that.

"When you've got an allergy you're always careful. If you've had an anaphylactic shock there's no way you want another one."

Natasha had been falsely reassured by the lack of any allergen warnings on an artichoke, olive and tapenade baguette which she purchased from a Pret a Manger outlet at Heathrow airport in July 2016. The sandwich contained sesame, but this was not listed among the ingredients.

Minutes into her flight from London to Nice with her father and best friend, she began feeling unwell with an itchy throat and red welts appearing on her abdomen "like a jellyfish sting".

Epipen injections failed to ease the symptoms, and Natasha began struggling to breathe before going into cardiac arrest.

She died later the same day in a French hospital.

Her parents have campaigned successfully for stricter food labelling, with Natasha's Law due to come into force in England, Wales and Northern Ireland from October 2021.

The rules will require retailers to provide full ingredients and allergen labelling for all foods which are prepared and pre-packed on the same premises.

The Scottish Government said it is "working to the same implementation timeframe".

READ MORE: Exposure to peanuts as infants 'can prevent nut allergies developing'

The Natasha Allergy Research Foundation is also donating £400,000 to fund postgraduate and PhD bursaries so that doctors, nurses and dieticians from across the UK can train at the University of Southampton's world leading allergy research centre.

"When people are training and getting educated, they often don't go into allergies because there isn't a job for them at the end of it," said Mrs Ednan Laperouse.

"So there just aren't enough allergy clinicians in the country. We hear from people all over that it's very much a postcode lottery depending where you live. If you don't have clinic nearby, which many people don't, they can often wait years to have their children screened by a specialist."

However, the fund's biggest goal is research: to unlock the causes of allergies, why they are on the rise, and how we can cure them.

Globally, children are far more likely than ever before to develop food allergies. According to Food Standards Scotland, one in six Scots has a food allergy or lives with someone who does.

As with other immunological disorders, such as Crohn's disease, incidence has been rising most rapidly in the West, although a definitive explanation remains elusive. It has been linked to everything from a surge in caesarean births to improved hygiene reducing youngsters' early exposure to germs and parasites.

"When Natasha was very little and I'd just found out her diagnosis, I went to a seminar called 'allergy research - what's happening now?'. It was the most depressing afternoon of my life because what was really clear then, 19 years ago, was that there was nothing.

"On the last day of Natasha's inquest, our lawyer said 'what's the one thing you would want to come out of this?' It was clear as day to us: more research. That's what was missing for us. More research into looking for a cure is what will bring people hope."