Emojis are a language feature that are, in a way, a universal language for smartphone users around the world. A new proposal suggests that more characters be added to represent food allergies.
Hiroyuki Komatsu drafted this document to be submitted for the approval of the Unicode Consortium, the database that approves new emojis.
Komatsu suggests adding peanut, soybean, buckwheat, sesame, kiwi, celery, lupin bean, and mustard emojis to represent common food allergies. The proposal states, “Emoji should cover characters representing major food allergens. It enables people to understand what nutritions are used in foods even in foreign countries and safely select meals.”
Currently, there are chestnut, egg, milk in a baby bottle, and loaf of bread emojis that could theoretically be used to communicate nut, egg, milk, and gluten allergies. But the proposal states that these are “weak alternatives” for food allergy representation. The only distinguishable food allergen emoji available is a fish.
Who would’ve thought that fun characters could be used to keep people safe?