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gluten-free Samples At The Health Food Store

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So at a local health food store that has a TON of gluten-free products (so many that I figure the owner must have Celiac!) they had samples of UDIs gluten-free muffins. Now, I had to throw away my UDIs cinnamon buns, they were awful but I miss a nice muffin, so I went and grabbed a sample. On the same plate there were some organic cookies. They had the package beside it and LUCKILY I glanced at the ingredients and saw these cookies were NOT gluten-free. And everything was co-mingling on the plate. Yikes.

My husband freaked out when I told him and he said I should have spoken to someone about it but I was in a huge rush and I am fairly sure that the 16 year old behind the counter didn't care. I just told him I have to be totally responsible for myself and not expect anyone else to do it for me. Once I thought about it, I do regret it because of people that may not have realized the cookies were a problem. I expect the store was not intentionally trying to poison people, it was just a mistake. I do try to educate when I can, I just wasn't in the mood.

I bet I wouldn't have liked the muffin anyway...:)


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Not too late to contact the store management anyway and complain, or do it Monday. Otherwise they'll just do it again. And again. There are internet store review sites like YELP that can really motivate people to be more careful.

This is typical behavior at health food stores anyway, it's why I would never do a sample, especially I am wary of anything marked "organic," they tend to be the worst offenders. We've all seen the spelt bread right next to the gluten free bread in the freezer case, etc. :blink:


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I've been leery of samples since going gluten-free because I just don't know how clean the prep area and platters and stuff are. Sometimes it seems safe-- using clean Popsicle sticks for samples fresh from a package and no other products (once there was a fava bean dip!) but mostly I skip them. I used to LOVE free samples, so it's a tiny bummer but I don't NEED them.

But I think mixed samples on the sample tray is just SILLY. I'd let them know casually (a note dropped off, an email, a comment next time you're there) just to feel better about maybe preventing a new less informed celiac from a reaction, but I agree with the looking out for yourself thing. Odds are good I won't starve by passing up any questionable food in this day and age.


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