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23-year-old dies from allergic reaction to whipped cream at meat restaurant

Worker allegedly thought he’d purchased non-dairy dessert for kosher eatery in Rosh Pina; police shut it down, detain 5 employees on suspicion of negligent homicide

Osher Deri (Courtesy)
Osher Deri (Courtesy)

A 23-year-old woman with a milk allergy died Wednesday night after she was served dairy whipped cream at a kosher meat restaurant in northern Israel.

Kosher restaurants typically serve either meat products or dairy products, but not both.

Police opened an investigation into the incident, shut down the restaurant in the town of Rosh Pina and detained five employees, including the owner and the chef, on suspicion of negligent homicide. The suspects were released to house arrest after law enforcement determined that they had not acted intentionally.

The victim was later identified as Osher Deri from the nearby town of Hatzor Haglilit.

Deri was rushed to Safed’s Ziv Medical Center when she started feeling unwell after eating her dessert. Doctors were forced to declare her death shortly after her arrival.

Deri had posted a photo to Instagram with the dessert just before the incident.

An initial investigation found that Deri had ordered a desert with whipped cream, assuming it was pareve (not dairy or meaty) as the restaurant was kosher and could not serve dairy with meat.

The chef, 19, had earlier noticed that they were out of whipped cream and told a co-worker to run to the store and purchase some. However, the employee allegedly bought a dairy product by mistake.

The victim did not have her epinephrine pen on her at the time of the allergic reaction. Her mother said she’d worked at the restaurant in the past and thus trusted that her desert would be non-dairy and safe.

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