Like me, a lot of you have probably called Hershey in the past. They have pretty thorough information on their labels, according to the reps I've spoken to and appear to take appropriate safety protocols. For those of you who want a nut-free facility for your chocolates, of course I will plug Vermont Nut-Free Chocolates once again! They have a huge selection of nut-free chocolates including baking chocolate, themed chocolate candies and some delicious new nut-free snacks. They are always my first choice.
Now, on to Hershey: I have used most of the following Hershey's products and they've worked out fine for my severely nut-allergic daughter. However, depending on your situation, they may not work for you. Always check with your doctor if you've got additional questions.
OK, with the disclaimer out of the way, here is the list of Hershey's candies that are currently "safe" for people allergic to tree nuts and peanuts:
Hershey's Milk Chocolate Bar - regular size 1.5 oz (KING Size or any other size of this bar does have cross contamination)--- this bar is made on a dedicated line 24 hours per day (does contain milk)
Jolly Ranchers - hard candy
Twizzlers - Strawberry (does contain wheat and soy)
York Peppermint Patty (does contain milk)
Hershey's Milk Chocolate Kisses (does contain milk)
Hershey's Chocolate Syrup
Hershey's Cocoa Powder (for baking)
Check out this link from the FAQS page at Hershey. It confirms what I have been told--if there is any concern about crossover contact, they will have an allergy warning such as "may contains" or "processed on equipment with." If you don't see this type of allergy warning you can then deem the product "safe."
For example, that would mean plain Hershey's milk chocolate kisses are safe for nut allergies. For other varieties--and there are so many--please read the labels carefully. Also, Hershey's semi-sweet baking chips are OK. This is good to know since Nestle, many people's old standyby, are off limits.
Of course, companies can make mistakes so we never have guarantees when purchasing prepared foods from a facility that is not dedicated nut-free. However, kudos to Hershey (located in my husband's hometown!) for taking food allergies seriously. If you have questions about specific allergy needs, you can call Hershey at 1-800-468-1714. Hours are Monday-Friday between 9 and 4 ET.