We’ve had so many people happy that we’re now offering peanut free and nut free sunflower seeds but many people would like them roasted and salted. Since we’re only offering the sunflower seeds as a raw, unsalted option right now, I looked up easy ways to do your own roasting.
Enjoy raw sunflower seeds
I found a great link on ehow (they even have a video if you need it) on how to prepare raw sunflower seeds for roasting. This is slightly different than toasting which I’ve done by just popping the seeds in a 350 degree oven for about 6-10 minutes until browned. This recipe requires an overnight soak in salted water, although you can remove the salt as you wish. Once roasted, the seeds can stay in a tight container for months or can be frozen and used as you need. Enjoy.
I just finished posting this post on the Facebook Gluten Free and Allergy Friendly Discussion Group but if you are not linked into that group, you can check out the post here:
I was driving back home from Victoria yesterday morning and saw a billboard on one of our local restaurants that said, “Celiac Menu Now Available”. How do you trust a restaurant with your Celiac Disease?
Last year the owner of a local pizza company talked to me about how they had developed a gluten free pizza at their current pizza business and that they were going to start offering it. I asked her what steps they were taking to avoid cross contamination and how they were verifying that their ingredients and final product was gluten free. Unfortunately, she couldn’t answer. This was not because she was an uncaring business owner, far from it. She just didn’t have any personal experience with food allergies to know that offering a gluten free pizza was about more than developing a recipe.
So what do you need to feel comfortable with eating out safely? While having an owner/chef who has food allergies or Celiac disease themselves can make us feel more comfortable, we all know people with food allergies who cut corners, eat products that “may contain” the avoided food or cheat on their gluten free diet because they are asymptomatic. So is it enough to have a “with it” chef or do you want to see a written policy?
You can put in your two cents by commenting on this blog post or you can go to the Facebook page link and make your comments there. Get in on the discussion!
The time is here for our 5 new products to take flight. Be sure to take advantage of the 5 Products, 50% Off for 5 Days Sale.
Check out the sale link at: http://www.nonuttin.com/shop/onsale.php?onsaleid=31
What can you get?
Blueberry Maple Granola
Cranberry Apple Granola
Berry Delight Trail Mix
Fruit Explosion Trail Mix
Raw Sunflower Seeds
And, of course, all of them are free of 9 of the top 10 food allergens: Peanut free, tree nut free, dairy free, wheat free, gluten free, sesame free, egg free, fish free, shellfish free, and sulfite free. The only allergen of note is “may contain: soy”.
I think you’ll love them but I’d also love to hear your feedback!
Did you know that agricultural cross contamination is a common issue in North America? In fact, it is considered so commonplace that the US Food and Drug Administration doesn’t require agricultural products to list contamination with other crops, even if they are a top food allergen.
Case in point: we are bringing out raw, shelled, unsalted sunflower seeds tomorrow as part of our new Fab 5 Products. Sunflower seeds can be cross contaminated with soybeans, corn and wheat. While millers/producers of these agricultural products have cross contamination procedures in place to identify and eliminate unexpected seeds/grains, the reality is that crops are taken off the field with the same machinery and trucks and are often stored in bins that previously contained another crop.
This is the same reason why pure, uncontaminated oats are controlled from the field to machinery to storage to milling. Otherwise, cross contamination is a real potential along the way.
Our new sunflower seeds do have a “may contain: soy” warning on them but this is also because we package them on the same line as our chocolate chip/chocolate chunk pouches (soy lecithin) and Energy Explosion trail mix (soybeans). We test ALL ingredients that come into our facility for wheat and gluten before they’re released to the production floor so you know that our sunflower seeds have been checked for that allergen.
For corn, we do not test nor do we have an allergen warning as corn is not a top food allergen. However, we will be adding a note into our corn declaration on our allergen declaration page regarding the sunflower seeds.
We provide this information to you, not because our sunflower seeds are more cross-contaminated than others, simply that we let you know about this potential cross contamination in the interests of keeping you informed about your food choices. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our team.
It’s getting to be quite a frenzy around here today with our Fabulous 5 New Products Launch happening tomorrow. We’ve got a great deal on the new products so you can give them a try with your family.
The five products are:
Blueberry Maple Granola
Cranberry Apple Granola
Berry Delight Trail Mix (with sunflower seeds)
Fruit Explosion Trail Mix (with sunflower seeds)
Raw, shelled, unsalted sunflower seeds
Now, I had not yet posted here about the raw, shelled, unsalted sunflower seeds although it was posted on our Facebook page last week. If you have a peanut/nut allergy family like we do at our house, you know how difficult it is to find sunflower seeds that don’t have the peanut/nut traces warning on them. We got so many requests from customers for sunflower seeds that we decided that if we were going to bring them in for new trail mixes, we’d also offer them on their own. We also decided to leave the seeds raw and unsalted because it’s really easy to give them a quick toast with salt in the oven at home but many people also like to have the seeds raw for throwing on salads or into baking. I’m sure you’ll enjoy them either way. Be sure to check back tomorrow for more details on the launch!
By the way, wheat contamination can also be an issue with all agricultural products and I’ve addressed that in a separate blog today.
One of the many food allergy research projects being funded right now is a Chinese Herbal Formula. In the last several years, it has been quite well publicized, especially since the Food Allergy Initiative raised a significant amount of money to provide a research grant to the project.
It looks like that money has paid off as peanut allergic mice who were given the formula have shown no peanut anaphylaxis compared to the control group. It appears that the formula was successful for up to 6 months. It is very promising news and now the research can enter phase 2; human trials for those with peanut, tree nut, sesame, fish and shellfish allergies.
To read more, see this link: http://www.faiusa.org/?page=Chinese_Herbal_Formula_to_Enter_Phase2_Trial
Another new item being launched next week is Fruit Explosion Trail Mix. Not only does this trail mix use the raw sunflower seeds that so many have requested, we also listened to requests for a trail mix without salt or chocolate. We’ve delivered with Fruit Explosion.
Simple and clean, this goodie is just raw sunflower seeds, diced dried apples and apple juice sweetened blueberries and cranberries. Throw it in lunches, backpacks, muffins, chocolate bark or your favorite plain cereal without adding additional sodium or refined sugar. Simply yummy!
Last Sunday, Rob and I had a booth at the BC Foodservice Show in Vancouver and it was quite the whirlwind of a day. We started serving up our new granolas, new trail mixes and our best-selling vanilla caramel granola and we just didn’t stop putting out samples to try as our booth had a continuous stream of people – including those who went around the show and came back for more.
Not only was it great to see so many people enjoying our products and taking samples of granola bars home for family, friends and colleagues, it was truly overwhelming to see so many people who needed special diets. We lost count of how many people came to our booth who personally had peanut/nut allergies, not to mention Celiac Disease or gluten intolerance. We do expect this response at consumer shows for food allergies but not at your average food industry show.
And for those who didn’t personally have food allergies/intolerances, very few needed any education about the need to offer specialty products to their clients. While some were not familiar with pure oats for a gluten free diet, all professionals who came to our booth had been receiving requests for meals and snacks that would meet the needs of various food allergies. We talked to deli owners, bakeries, ice cream producers, chefs, caterers, universities, schools and more.
What a difference from when we first started Nonuttin’ Foods and we had to explain why a peanut free granola bar was a necessity. While I still think we have a long way to go, it’s really nice to see that support groups, allergic people and allergic parents everywhere have begun to turn around a very slow moving industry. I look forward to the day when eating out with food allergies is a breeze.
The Allergic and Celiac communities in Canada have been in an uproar since November regarding our new food allergen and gluten source labeling laws that have been languishing for years. The laws began their journey in the 1990’s and by 2008, after pressure from allergy/Celiac groups, our government promised that we’d have definitive labelling laws in due course. In November, we began lobbying the Canadian government yet again as we were told that the laws were in jeopardy if they weren’t passed by December 31, 2010.
That date has come and gone yet our government says that the laws will be finalized shortly. We’ve been writing letters, signing petitions, contacting our MLA’s, meeting with the Health Minister and more to just get this done so we Canadians can have a law just like our American neighbors. Health Canada held countless roundtables and there were input periods for all manufacturers with the last one for comment on pure oats ending July 11, 2010.
Now, beer companies are lobbying to stop these upcoming laws on the premise that they will cause undue hardship to beer companies and that Celiacs all “know” that beer has gluten in it so why would beer and spirits need to be labelled?
I don’t know what’s in beer because I don’t drink it. Yet, somehow all allergic/Celiac individuals are supposed to innately know what’s in their spirits? And as one person suggested, what if I can’t drink something but my hostess doesn’t know that as she makes her special recipe with beer, liqueur, etc?
With years to weigh in with Health Canada during the consultation process and an 18 month phase in of any new labelling laws, the beer industry needs to give their head a shake and figure out that keeping people safe and healthy is really what’s in their best interest.
Want to know more? Here’s link on the story at CTV news: http://www.ctv.ca/CTVNews/Health/20110125/food-allergens-beer-110125/
Over the last couple of weeks I introduced you to 2 of our new products: Blueberry Maple Granola and Berry Delight Trail Mix. Now it’s time to introduce you to my new favorite, Cranberry Apple Granola.
I have to say, I’m not normally much of a fan of cranberry products. I could take them or leave them. Not so this little gem; I’ve been known to trample over employees to get to the test kitchen samples of our new Cranberry Apple Granola.
What makes this one so special? I think that it’s just a fantastic combination between the sweet softness of our diced apples with a bit of that cranberry tartness. We’ve added just a touch of green apple flavor which smells fabulous, especially just when you open the bag. I try not to go around with my head stuck in the bag though – not if I don’t want my employees to think I’ve gone over the edge (after they pick themselves up off the floor).
And of course, like all Nonuttin Natural Foods’ granolas, this granola is: peanut free, tree nut free, dairy free, egg free, sesame free, gluten free, sulphite free, wheat free, with a may contain soy label.
Whether you like your granola plain as a snack, with soymilk or your favorite yogurt/alternative, this granola is sure to become a staple in your house.