Jump to content

Menu

Help me compose a letter to a local bakery re gluten free items that are not GF.


BlueTaelon
 Share

Recommended Posts

I saw an ad in the local paper that a local bakery had GF items which had me excited has they are hard to find around here. So I stopped by and was disappointed that their selection consisted of 4 loaves of Canyon Bakehouse bread and chocolate dipped macaroons. I HAD planned to ask the usual,what precautions do you take to prevent cross contamination ect but I didn't even get that far because as soon as I saw those macaroons I was mad, yes, mad. These people have NO CLUE about GF and are just looking at making money not realizing they are making people sick. They were in the cookie case with 2 rows of gluten cookies above them and you could see the crumbs that were falling down on to the macaroons they claim are GF. They should not even be in the same case much less below gluten filled poisons (for us with celiac it IS poison). I explained the problem with them to the girl at the counter and the CC issue and she just looked at me like I was nuts. I should have asked for the owner but I was so shocked and angry I didn't think to to ask for them and left and now want to drop them a line while a lot calmer. I would be in agony right now had I eaten them, I'm pretty sure they would not pass the 20ppm legal limit either with that much CC.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dear XYZ Bakery Owner (*I would find out the name of the owner and address the letter to him/her specifically*),

 

I was excited to learn that you are offering gluten free items, and stopped by your bakery recently to check out your selection. As a person diagnosed with celiac disease, I am always looking for quality gluten free products that are manufactured and stored in an environment free of cross-contamination. When I visited your bakery, I was very concerned to find that the gluten free chocolate macaroons were in a case with gluten cookies (the crumbs of which were clearly falling down on the macaroons - rendering them no longer gluten free, and extremely unsafe for individuals who have celiac). I want you to be aware of this issue and the risk it poses, as cross-contamination of your products advertised as gluten free could cause your customers to become quite ill.

 

If you'd like, I'd be glad to speak with you in person about steps you and your employees can take to avoid cross-contamination issues. Our community needs more gluten free options and I like to support businesses that are taking steps to offer them. You can reach me at 555-1212. Thank you for your consideration of this matter, and I look forward to hearing from you.

 

Best regards,

BlueTaelon

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest submarines

I wouldn't necessarily assume that they are "just wanting to make money" and don't care that people might get sick. They probably thought they were doing a good thing, and they are not informed about Celiac. I don't understand why you are so angry. They didn't try to trick you. They need to be educated, that's all.

 

You're naturally disappointed, and I'd be too, but for all they know, they are doing a good thing. So many people are gluten free these days, and not all of them actually have Celiac. My kids are "GF" but they don't have Celiac, and our home kitchen is "contaminated". We would've been okay buying from them. Give them an opportunity to do better, or to realise that they can't cater to those with Celiac, instead of bashing them.

 

:chillpill: :grouphug:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think Julie's response is absolutely perfect, whether you deliver it in the form of a letter or via a phone call. It will get your point across very clearly, without being rude or nasty.

 

If you don't receive a favorable reply, perhaps your local health department has regulations regarding food labeling. (I have no idea about that, but it seems like it would be illegal to misrepresent food products as being free of contaminants, when they're not. I'm pretty sure that where we are, if a restaurant has a gluten-free menu, they also need a separate, designated gluten-free kitchen in which to prepare that food, to ensure that there is no cross-contamination.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Aaaack! Thank goodness you saw the case. What if some kind person had brought you some GF treats from that bakery, not knowing? Probably you'd not have eaten them, but still... It could happen.

 

I love the above letter. Please do send it. I think sending a letter would be better than a phone call, although a phone call to follow up might be good, too.

 

We ran into this on vacation, with nuts. A fudge shop was selling "tree nut/peanut free fudge" that was repackaged and next to items containing nuts. It was clearly dangerous, for people with true nut allergies. I was so upset, thinking some uninformed grandparent might take nut free fudge home to a grandchild! Plus, I was disappointed for DS. I tried to talk to the owner about it, but she obviously thought I was over the top. Hopefully your letter will go over better!

 

ETA: This really highlights DS's allergist's words for me. When talking about restaurants, and the safety of eating out with LTFAs, DS's allergist said, "You are putting all of your trust in these people." The wait staff, the cooks, everyone. It's true. When food can make one terribly ill, or even kill a person, we put every ounce of our trust in the person preparing it. It can be a scary proposition when the people preparing the food are not fully informed, no matter how good their intentions might have been.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I wouldn't necessarily assume that they are "just wanting to make money" and don't care that people might get sick. They probably thought they were doing a good thing, and they are not informed about Celiac. I don't understand why you are so angry. They didn't try to trick you. They need to be educated, that's all.

 

You're naturally disappointed, and I'd be too, but for all they know, they are doing a good thing. So many people are gluten free these days, and not all of them actually have Celiac. My kids are "GF" but they don't have Celiac, and our home kitchen is "contaminated". We would've been okay buying from them. Give them an opportunity to do better, or to realise that they can't cater to those with Celiac, instead of bashing them.

 

:chillpill: :grouphug:

 

 

:hurray:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dear XYZ Bakery Owner (*I would find out the name of the owner and address the letter to him/her specifically*),

 

I was excited to learn that you are offering gluten free items, and stopped by your bakery recently to check out your selection. As a person diagnosed with celiac disease, I am always looking for quality gluten free products that are manufactured and stored in an environment free of cross-contamination. When I visited your bakery, I was very concerned to find that the gluten free chocolate macaroons were in a case with gluten cookies (the crumbs of which were clearly falling down on the macaroons - rendering them no longer gluten free, and extremely unsafe for individuals who have celiac). I want you to be aware of this issue and the risk it poses, as cross-contamination of your products advertised as gluten free could cause your customers to become quite ill.

 

If you'd like, I'd be glad to speak with you in person about steps you and your employees can take to avoid cross-contamination issues. Our community needs more gluten free options and I like to support businesses that are taking steps to offer them. You can reach me at 555-1212. Thank you for your consideration of this matter, and I look forward to hearing from you.

 

Best regards,

BlueTaelon

 

 

Perfection...a thing of beauty....

 

You should be a writer or a lawyer or a mediator or something like that. :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I wouldn't necessarily assume that they are "just wanting to make money" and don't care that people might get sick. They probably thought they were doing a good thing, and they are not informed about Celiac. I don't understand why you are so angry. They didn't try to trick you. They need to be educated, that's all.

:iagree: and I think Julie's letter sounded great.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

People don't know about these things.

 

I had never heard of celiac until about a year ago. I had no idea about cross contamination issues until about a month ago when I asked about it on this board.

 

I think the best approach is to provide friendly and clear information.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

How can anyone trust anything to be gf if it's made in a traditional bakery? They would have to have a completely seperate kitchen, and even vent system I would think, to keep from cc. We have a dedicated gf bakery that opened up here last year. We don't go there much, as it is expensive, and selection is extrememly limited (no bread on a reg. basis). Dh and I have talked about opening a gf bakery/cafe. Maybe someday!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

And unless they are preparing the food in a separate kitchen, my understanding is that someone with a life-threatening gluten allergy shouldn't eat there, anyway. I'd assume contamination.

 

I bake for about 1,000 people each weekend, and flour is everywhere in the kitchen. There's nothing we can do about that. We just don't have a separate kitchen, separate ovens, and separate tools and we never will.

 

For that reason, I don't say the 'gluten-free' rolls are gluten-free; I say we added no wheat flour. Maybe that's what this bakery needs to say, as well?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

ETA: This really highlights DS's allergist's words for me. When talking about restaurants, and the safety of eating out with LTFAs, DS's allergist said, "You are putting all of your trust in these people." The wait staff, the cooks, everyone. It's true. When food can make one terribly ill, or even kill a person, we put every ounce of our trust in the person preparing it. It can be a scary proposition when the people preparing the food are not fully informed, no matter how good their intentions might have been.

 

I have read that most restaurant employees don't particularly understand food allergies, so may not understand what is in certain dishes, and may not think there's a problem to just pick offending food off of the plate. Personally, I have not found family members (who have their own food allergies, no less) to be particularly capable of remembering anything, so I take it all on myself, and the allergies in question are not life threatening.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I so share your frustration BlueTaelon. :grouphug: It is frustration for us to have to research everything that goes into our Celiac kids mouths. It is downright dangerous when friends and family see something marked gluten free and trust "truth in advertising".

 

 

Discussing the issues time after time with offending stores, manufacturers, restaurants, and even a pharmacy, I repeatedly come up against a wall of apathy. There must be a better way.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

And then you'll find a bakery that swears that everything is dedicated gf and baked in a gf bakery.....and yet not gf. What then ticks me off is that the bakery doesn't believe you when you say you got sick from gluten.

 

There are very specific symptoms I get ONLY from gluten. I have zero food intolerance other than gluten. I can tell when I eat gluten. It is a very very particular feeling. However, said bakery refuses to believe that somehow their product was contaminated with gluten.

 

So, my lesson? Don't eat anything outside my home even it is supposed to be dedicated gf.

 

I'm still angry about that. Ugh. Don't tell me that it wasn't gluten that made me sick. I don't break out in dermatistis herpetiformis from anything except gluten. Bleeping people.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you everyone, letter sent:) For those wondering why I was angry its because they obviously did not do more then basic research on gluten free beyond something made without gluten. I found out a friend did eat those macaroons and became ill although that was stupidity on her part (she's not celiac, just allergic which makers it an even dumber move on her part) but she was told the chocolate they use is the same chocolate they dip the gluten stuff in so thats another issue too showing they are clueless. In her case she threw up immediately after eating them so she knew something was wrong with them right then.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

And then you'll find a bakery that swears that everything is dedicated gf and baked in a gf bakery.....and yet not gf. What then ticks me off is that the bakery doesn't believe you when you say you got sick from gluten.

 

There are very specific symptoms I get ONLY from gluten. I have zero food intolerance other than gluten. I can tell when I eat gluten. It is a very very particular feeling. However, said bakery refuses to believe that somehow their product was contaminated with gluten.

 

So, my lesson? Don't eat anything outside my home even it is supposed to be dedicated gf.

 

I'm still angry about that. Ugh. Don't tell me that it wasn't gluten that made me sick. I don't break out in dermatistis herpetiformis from anything except gluten. Bleeping people.

 

 

 

Was it Deland Bakery? They were busted for putting gluten into their GF Millet bread about 2 years ago and now claim they have a dedicated place but I will NEVER trust them after that stunt. Hundreds became sick and testing proved it wasn't simple CC but the levels indicated gluten was used as an ingredient.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

 

Was it Deland Bakery? They were busted for putting gluten into their GF Millet bread about 2 years ago and now claim they have a dedicated place but I will NEVER trust them after that stunt. Hundreds became sick and testing proved it wasn't simple CC but the levels indicated gluten was used as an ingredient.

 

 

 

:crying: That is seriously evil.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...