7 May 2012
I have the sincere pleasure of getting to chat with our customers and some days quite a few of them. After a while, you can sometimes find patterns in the types of questions asked and I can tell you, I’ve heard some great stories of our customers introduction to our foods as well as recipe ideas. One thing I appreciate and have learned from our customers who have food allergies or are calling / emailing on behalf of a family member with food allergies is to read the ingredient label, to ask questions about production and ultimately to be your own advocate.
Most of America could learn from this approach to eating mindfully- in a different way. And yet, I recognize that for those with food allergies, they are thrust into it one day without a manual of where to start, only a goal of what to eliminate and thus they begin the question-asking process. I’ve talked to customers recently diagnosed with gluten intolerance as well to mothers with kids that have a litany of allergies who are feeling a bit beaten down. I like to give them something to smile about, something that’s nourishing to their spirits.
Nourished Food Bloggers Conference took place in the suburbs of Chicago in mid-April and we happily sponsored this convergence of niche food bloggers. Many of them I’d read their blogs and seen such innovative, fun recipe ideas but there were a bunch of new faces too. I met Nom Yum Free as she toted around her baby girl during the one day conference and learned of her daughter’s food allergies and her new list of foods to avoid. After hearing the list I promised her a box of Rice Twice which I read from a blog post she tweeted this last week she ate “by the handful.”
I canoodled with old friends and got to see what the ladies of Easy Eats good to be gluten free magazine and then celebrated finding camaraderie and kinship with the lovely folks from Living Without magazine. Our friends from Pacific Foods joined us to pour non-dairy milks and offer a sweet giveaway during the Gluten Free / Allergen Free Expo.
Throughout the entire weekend, I would have been sunk had it not been for sidekick extraordinaire, Charissa of local Bay Area gluten free Zest Bakery. She helped me serve our No-Bake Gluten Free Date Bars at the closing cocktail party and provide recipe tips at the corresponding next two days of the Gluten Free / Allergen Free Expo. We even got to see fireworks light up the evening sky one night as a wedding party perched on the balcony of our conference hotel.
Community- it’s something I believe in, noted by my company title of Online Community Manager. Bringing people together, playing off of each other’s strengths for the purpose of building each other up are things that get me up every morning and keep me going late into the night.
During the month of May, we are partnering with our friends at Bob’s Red Mill to bring you a Whole Grain Brunch. We challenged eight bloggers to bake or cook up a healthy brunch recipe using one Bob’s Red Mill product and one Attune Foods product. Tune in here each Monday and Friday to see that week’s featured bloggers and what they’ve cooked up. There’s nothing more communal than the table. Won’t you join us during May for a Whole Grain Brunch? Stay tuned later today for our first featured blogger.
With thanks and attribution of all photos by the fabulous Charissa of Zest Gluten Free Bakery.
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