Southwest Airlines to stop serving peanuts on all flights starting August 1

DALLAS — Southwest Airlines announced Monday it will stop serving peanuts on all flights beginning August 1.

Despite serving more than 106 million packages of peanuts in 2017, the decision came as a cautionary measure for those who may suffer from life-threatening nut allergies, FOX News reported.

Earlier this year, a 9-year-old suffered an extreme reaction on a flight from Atlanta to Houston after a flight crew with the airline ignored advanced notification of his allergy, according to the boy’s family.

“Peanuts forever will be part of Southwest’s history and DNA,” the airline says, per the San Francisco Chronicle, adding the “difficult decision” was made “to ensure the best on-board experience for everyone, including customers with peanut-related allergies.”

Several other airlines have already removed peanuts from flights as a courtesy to those with allergies. Just last year, Delta swapped peanuts for almonds.

However, CBS DFW notes “free packs of peanuts are part of what defines Southwest Airlines.” Indeed, the airline’s marketing campaigns have stressed that fliers pay “peanuts” in airfare and get the added bonus of free nuts.

Southwest fliers must now be content with free pretzels, or free cookies on longer flights, per the Chronicle.