I was cruising down the aisle at Wally World (Walmart) today getting a few items and looking for a healthy snack my son could take to school. Usually, I send him with fruit, pretzels, or crackers…but he has been wanting something a little different.
Not always, but more often that not, I find that the ‘healthy’ granola bars and dried fruits and yogurt/fruit bites either contain peanuts/nuts or have a warning saying they “may contain traces of” or “are processed on the same equipment as.” It’s so discouraging, I’ve kind of quit looking at that those type of items for my family.
Today I came across a package of Cascadian Farm Vanilla Chip Chewy Granola Bars. They looked delicious and it would be a nice change for my son. (Cascadian Farm is a company that guarantees organic ingredients in all of their products which include everything from frozen fruit to cereal to granola bars and so on. http://cascadianfarm.com)
I read the ingredient lable…check. There was no “may contain” statement. Just to be sure, I whipped out my cell phone and dialed the company’s number on the box. An extremely wonderful and patient customer representative looked up the food allergen information.
According to the Cascadian Farm representative I spoke with the 8 major allergens will all be listed (if they are included in the product) in the ingredient statement. In addition, if there is any chance of cross contamination from processing on the same equipment or traces of an allergen that could be found in the product there will be an additional statement below the ingredients that says, “May contain traces of…”
The particular product I had in my hand showed neither peanuts/nuts listed in the ingredients or in any other statements.
I am so grateful for the customer representatives knowledge of food allergies (she didn’t even have to put me on hold or transfer me) and her ability to thoroughly and patiently answer each of my questions.
Not every Cascadian Farm product will work for those with food allergies, but it appears as though the company takes food allergies to heart and is very thorough and consistent in their labeling standards. For that, I am so very grateful!