Food allergies complicate hungry Americans’ search for meals

  • Emily Brown talks with her daughters Hannah, 7, left, and Catherine, 9, outside her office Wednesday in Kansas City, Mo. Brown runs a nonprofit service to help families with food allergies access safe and healthy foods which she started after having difficulty obtaining food for her daughters who have numerous food allergies. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

SACRAMENTO, California — When Emily Brown, a Kansas City mother, couldn’t find foods that her 2-year-old with multiple food allergies could eat at a local food pantry, she mustered up the courage to ask about gluten-free foods or dairy alternatives.