Food Allergy Counseling

Food Allergy Counseling
Sloane Miller, Food Allergy Counselor (Picture © Noel Malcolm 2013)

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Chic Naturals

(These are all five flavors, set out for me and my non-allergic co-tester of Chic Naturals roasted chickpeas.)

Chic Naturals found me on Twitter and when I had a zoom around their website, I asked to get some samples and I’m so glad I did. I’m a chickpea fan, baked, fried, stewed; I eat them with pasta and I love to snack on them. So these snacks are really right up my alley.

Chic Naturals says they are “Made in our own dedicated Gluten Free, Nut Free facility.” Further exploring on their site produced their “About Us” link. What interested me most were their statements about being a dedicated facility and which chocolate they use. I emailed asking for some further information. Here is the reply I received, reprinted with permission:

"We have our own dedicated kitchen on Maui. We do not use a co-packer and never will because we are committed to manufacturing an allergen free product and we can only guarantee that if we manufacture that product ourselves. The only products we process in our kitchen are chickpeas and chickpea products. The only products that are put in our ovens are chickpeas. We are totally gluten free and nut free, as well as free of many other allergens including corn and yeast. 

We have absolutely no nuts of any kind in or near our kitchen and that includes every kind of tree nuts, as well as coconuts. 

We support American farmers and use only American grown chickpeas; therefore we know where our chickpeas are coming from and what growing process they go through.



The chocolate we use is Guittard's and we only use their real chocolate. The dark chocolate they produce is also dairy free, which is great for people with allergies to dairy/casein. Regarding your question about it being free of tree nuts, I can tell you that they are definitely peanut free and they have a disclosure that although their chocolate is made in a facility that also handles tree nuts, the chocolate is made in a nut free environment. They have a FAQ section on their website at: http://www.guittard.com/faq.asp if you would like to read their disclosures and answers to customers questions. In our opinion they produce a great product. When we are working with the chocolate we have a separate room for that in order to guarantee that our products are soy free and dairy free with the exception of the chocolate products.



We started this business because we have family members who various issues with food, which include allergies and digestion problems, as well as celiacs & MS. 

We are totally committed to making a very healthy product that consists of only "real food" and nothing else."

(For more about Guittard and tree nuts here is their allergen statement from 2006. I have tried Guittard before without issue and will be reviewing them soon.)
 
With those reassurances I happily tucked in and tried all five flavors. And I loved them all.

Hawaiian Sea Salt & Herbs is salty and herby, great to put out as a safe snack during cocktail hour.

Spicy BBQ is full of smokey paprika – addictive.

Sweet Citrus – both sweet and savory all at once. I finished that bag first.

Maui Mocha - has a deep coffee smell and flavor – the chickpea virtually disappears.

Chocolate Crunch – these clusters are made with dark chocolate. Not overly sweet, they have that fruit-like flavor of high quality chocolate combined with a savory note of a roasted legume (think peanuts but not peanuts). These chocolates are definitely way too easy to pop!

Thank you Chic Naturals for producing such a yummy snack and especially for your transparency about your allergen polices and procedures and your availability for questions – we love that!   

Have more questions? Please contact them for more information. 

1 comment:

Lindsay said...

Yum! I think I'll place an order!