Ever since I found out that such an event as the GIG Annual Education Conference existed, I’ve wished that it would it would one day be held in the South. Well, a few months ago, I found out that my wish was coming true. The 2011 Gluten Intolerance Group Conference is being held in Orlando, FL. Orlando is particularly gluten-free friendly, even at places outside the Disney properties. Therefore, the city is a natural to host this wonderful event hosted by GIG each year. The date for the event in 2011 is June 30th – July 2nd.
For anyone not familiar with GIG, it’s a great resource for all things related to the gluten-free lifestyle. The first national gluten-free restaurant certification program was started by GIG and their GFCO seal of approval makes gluten-free shopping easier than ever. GIG certified Erlanger Hospital for gluten-free service for patients who can’t eat gluten and they are working to add more large food service companies to their impressive line up.
The 2010 GIG Conference was a huge success and the 2011 event should be incredible as well. Cynthia Kupper heads up the GIG association and she happens to be the key note speaker at the upcoming Atlanta Gluten-free Vendor Fair in September. Cynthia and her team train and evaluate restaurants interested in offering gluten-free menus. They also work with companies interested in making safe products for the gluten-free market. In other words, the group is somewhat of a watch dog association helping to keep us all a bit safer in terms of gluten-free dining options and products.
GIG’s gluten-free certification organization is the one that Snyder’s trusted to put their new gluten-free pretzels to the gluten-free test. The pretzels are made in a facility that processes wheat so there is much work to be done to ensure they are in fact, gluten-free. The GFCO’s seal of approval is the one you’ll see on gluten-free certified goods more often than any other. When you see that trusted symbol on a package you can rest assured that there is no reason to question the safety of it. While it might not be important for a can of pineapple to bear such a symbol, there is now good reason to look for it on all gluten-free flours including those you’d assume would be gluten-free naturally.
Excerpt from GIG’s website:
The vision of the Gluten Intolerance Group of North America is one of mutual support, acceptance, and respect for all persons living with gluten intolerances and working with this community. GIG envisions a united gluten intolerant community in which all persons feel they are healthy, are positively nurtured to live life to the fullest, and are involved and contributing citizens. (Read more here).
The goals of the GIG organization are ones I wholeheartedly support and many others in our community do as well. Instead of imparting fear in the community, the group strives to educate those living gluten-free with the most up to date information available. In my opinion, an educated gluten-free consumer is the very best kind. Special thanks to all the great folks that make up the GIG organization, for making our all lives easier!