Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Useful Resources: Triumph Dining's Gluten Free Grocery Guide

I recently received a copy of the latest Triumph Dining The Essential Gluten Free Grocery Guide for my review from Ross Cohen, the President of Triumph Dining. I had seen their 1st edition and was already considering purchasing the 2nd edition when it became available.

Triumph Dining was founded in 2005 by Mr. Cohen and originally published GF Dining Cards (translated to 10 languages) for people to take to restaurants to help get a GF meal. In just 3 years time, Triumph has blossomed into a full fledged publishing company and added publications like The Essential Gluten-Free Restaurant Guide (updated annually) and The Essential Gluten-Free Grocery Guide (also updated annually). In that time frame, the company has sold over 40,000 copies of their products. They also offer a newsletter available via email and also write information on a Blog.

The Grocery Guide
The 2nd Edition Grocery Guide is a 230+ page book which features nearly twice as many Gluten Free products as the 1st Edition. The guide has 30,000 products covered and includes over 1,000 brand name products. The Guide is smaller than the size of a sheet of paper and can easily be taken along with you to the grocery store. We all know that navigating a typical grocery store (usually has over 40,000) products can be a daunting task. My first trip after going Gluten Free cost me about 3 hours. The experience is better now but a guide can be very helpful. Personally, I use the guide to make notes on the grocery list (before I leave the house) about which brands I should look out for while shopping. Like if bacon is on the list, I would make a small note beside that item on my list for Oscar Meyer.

The Guide starts out with a Easy Reference Table of Contents which clearly shows which page in the guide has more information about the particular type of product you are looking to buy. Looking for Sour Cream, check out page 37... Taco Shells - page 110. You get the idea. You can then just flip to that page and find more details about the brands that make the GF product you are looking for.

Some products in the details section have little symbols beside them. The symbols let you know if the product is made in a facility with GF lines, equipment, environment of facilities or if testing is done to determine the level of gluten. There are also symbols to let you know if Cross-Contamination is a possible issue. Some products are also more closely reviewed by Triumph staff to determine the gluten content of the ingredients.

Next comes an eight-page section with general tips for grocery shopping, an overview of Food Labeling Laws and a helpful reminder about the limitations of the guide (always read the label before you put the product in your cart).

The last section is the meat of the guide which features over 200 pages of detailed information about GF products. The categories are as follows: Dairy & Eggs, Beverages, Baking Aisle, Canned & Pre-packaged goods, Packaged Sides, Meals & Meal Helpers, Condiments, Sauces & Dressings, Cereal & Bread, Snacks & Convenience Foods, Baby Food & Formula, Frozen Foods and finally Meats.

Click here to purchase your Grocery Guide for about $20. Triumph also offers a money back guarantee if you are not happy with your purchase.


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