Gluten Free Tip for Meeting Planners and Travelers

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I don't know how long this option will last, but WestJet is certainly onto something.

WestJet carries a gluten free snack box for travelers!

And it is only 8 bucks!

And comes with lots of goodies!


So where is the tip in this for travelers?  Fly WestJet!

I was going to a meeting, and I bought one for off the plane to see what it looked like when you opened it.  My intent was to bring it home for Amanda.  However my colleague that is Celiac was delighted I walked into the meeting with a gluten free snack box, since the hotel really didn't supply much in the way of a gluten free snack, except for a seran wrap of cut up fruits and or veggies.  Look at how happy Jan was when I handed it to her!
 

And the tip for Meeting Planners and Caterers?

This is so easy to put together and have on hand.  Look how happy my colleague was when I gave her the snack box.  Do you know how happy you can make your customers with Celiac Disease if they walked into a catered meeting, and was handed a gluten free snack box like this?  They will be walking away so happy telling everyone to book your venue, catering company or planner!

For smaller shops,  lots of the items here have a long shelf life.  Lots of great gluten free snack size items can easily be found at Costco.  A snack size veggie chip, a snack size Made Good Bar, etc.

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Tips Caterers Serving Gluten Free Foods

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I took a week long course recently that was held in the conference rooms MacEwan University.  It was a wonder space in their new Allard Hall building.  Bright colours, open space, you can see the students walking around with their creative juices, singing their scales, practicing their instruments and reading their poetry.

But really, this is about the catering there.  Not about what they served, but how they served it.  I am not going to comment on the food, selection, because they only served snacks for this course.  We were on our own for meals.

But what caught my attention is what every caterer should do.  Not just for gluten free, but for all allergens, like MacEwan University did.

See below:


This is the simplest way to remove confusion about what is being served.

  1. Colour code alergens with a legend
  2. Have the obvious disclaimer about cross contamination
  3. Place cards in front of each item being served with properly allergy markers.
Simple, easy to follow, and easy to understand.

The other tip to go with this is:
  • Keep allergens as separate as possible
  • Wrap items with nut or with gluten separately when possible
  • Ensure enough serving utensils are available to avoid people using one to pick up several items from different trays
Tip for someone attending an event that is going to be catered:
  1. Call ahead and speak to the catering manager.
  2. Allow them proper time to prepare you a meal that is going to meet your needs
  3. Ask what they will serve, ask about any procedures they have to reduce cross contamination 
  4. At the event, speak with staff or even better speak to the catering manager and confirm your conversation

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