You Had Me At Eat

Episode 58: Expo West 2024 - Gluten Free Oats in the Natural Product Industry

April 09, 2024 You Had Me At Eat Season 2 Episode 58
Episode 58: Expo West 2024 - Gluten Free Oats in the Natural Product Industry
You Had Me At Eat
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You Had Me At Eat
Episode 58: Expo West 2024 - Gluten Free Oats in the Natural Product Industry
Apr 09, 2024 Season 2 Episode 58
You Had Me At Eat

Something on your mind? Erica & Jules would love to hear from you!

On this episode of the You Had Me At Eat podcast, Jules and Erica begin their annual recap of the Natural Products Expo West trade show. Since it's such a huge show to cover, they talk all about oats on this episode: how does someone with celiac disease navigate all of new products made with oats, oat milk, or oat flour? Stay tuned for upcoming episodes covering other new gluten free products launched at Expo West!

Camille Rose hair care (gluten-free)
Definition of Purity Protocol oats
Purity Protocol Oats in regular peoples' terms
Fomilk - pistachio milk
Tasche pistachio milk lattes
Groundwork cashew milk or coconut milk lattes
Elmhurst ready-to-drink coffee brown sugar oat latte
Made Good
Pitaya Smoothie Bowls
Nana Joe’s
ZEGO Foods
Maizely Corn Milk
Uncle Crumble’s / Bakery on Main
Chi Chi
La Columbe GFCO-Certified RTD oat milk latte
Planet Oat is not using purity protocol oats
Califia Farms limited ingredient organic oat milk is not gluten-free
Which Oat Milks are Gluten Free (and which  are Not)
Whipt (unsure if oats used are gluten-free, avoid until known - stick to almond & coconut)

Contact/Follow Jules & Erica

Thanks for listening! Be sure to subscribe!
*some links may be affiliate links; purchasing through these links will not cost you more, but will help to fund the podcast you ❤️

Show Notes Transcript

Something on your mind? Erica & Jules would love to hear from you!

On this episode of the You Had Me At Eat podcast, Jules and Erica begin their annual recap of the Natural Products Expo West trade show. Since it's such a huge show to cover, they talk all about oats on this episode: how does someone with celiac disease navigate all of new products made with oats, oat milk, or oat flour? Stay tuned for upcoming episodes covering other new gluten free products launched at Expo West!

Camille Rose hair care (gluten-free)
Definition of Purity Protocol oats
Purity Protocol Oats in regular peoples' terms
Fomilk - pistachio milk
Tasche pistachio milk lattes
Groundwork cashew milk or coconut milk lattes
Elmhurst ready-to-drink coffee brown sugar oat latte
Made Good
Pitaya Smoothie Bowls
Nana Joe’s
ZEGO Foods
Maizely Corn Milk
Uncle Crumble’s / Bakery on Main
Chi Chi
La Columbe GFCO-Certified RTD oat milk latte
Planet Oat is not using purity protocol oats
Califia Farms limited ingredient organic oat milk is not gluten-free
Which Oat Milks are Gluten Free (and which  are Not)
Whipt (unsure if oats used are gluten-free, avoid until known - stick to almond & coconut)

Contact/Follow Jules & Erica

Thanks for listening! Be sure to subscribe!
*some links may be affiliate links; purchasing through these links will not cost you more, but will help to fund the podcast you ❤️

Erica [00:00:13]:
Hey. I'm Erica.

Jules [00:00:14]:
And I'm Jules. Most people have at least one thing that they can't or won't eat.

Erica [00:00:19]:
Now we're definitely like that.

Jules [00:00:21]:
We started this podcast to talk about the gluten free food industry,

Erica [00:00:25]:
Like new products and some of the stories behind your favorite brands.

Jules [00:00:29]:
And living life with especially diet and also some important health care topics.

Erica [00:00:34]:
Since we're basically both broken inside.

Jules [00:00:36]:
You had me at eat.

Erica [00:00:41]:
Hello. Hi. And welcome to another episode of you had me at eat. This is our special expo west edition of our podcast. We are back. At least half of us are healthy. I'm Erica.

Jules [00:00:57]:
Yeah. I'm the unhealthy one. I'm Jules. And we've delayed this podcast because I've been unhealthy for 2 weeks now. And so this is me sounding better. Yeah. I know. I know.

Jules [00:01:10]:
I've been, like, flying all over the country picking up viruses, like, you know, a hot date. So here we go. It's good times.

Erica [00:01:20]:
Yeah. We, heard from you. The last time was 2 weeks ago before Easter, and you were on a plane, and you had just been glutened. So that's not fun, but now you've picked up an actual virus on top of your immune system already being compromised with gluten. So lucky you.

Jules [00:01:37]:
Lucky lucky me. Yeah. I had to actually skip Easter. All that talk of Easter. I did a bunch of Easter baking and then sent it along with my family and I stayed home and laid on the couch. And I had a fever, and I was just you know, I was a mess. So Cool. Yep.

Jules [00:01:53]:
Yeah. It was good times. How about you?

Erica [00:01:55]:
It's been weird because Arizona has been going from 60 degrees to 90 degrees to 60 degrees to 80 degrees, so everyone has, like, the sinus pressure headache for basically 2 straight weeks. Everyone's sick. I have knock on plywood, avoided it, but who knows? It's still a journey out there every day in the gyms when people are just snotty and in the the lines at the grocery store. Yeah. People are kinda gross right now as a whole. Okay.

Jules [00:02:28]:
As a whole. Yeah. There's just there's been so much stuff going around. And then I think it was hard to just avoid and travel. But, I am finally starting to feel a little

Jules [00:02:41]:
bit better. So here I am,

Jules [00:02:41]:
and we're excited to start doing our recaps of expo. But, you know, you referred to it as a as an episode, but, I mean, when have we ever done an expo west recap in one episode?

Erica [00:02:53]:
I mean, so that's not gonna happen. So there will be several episodes to set this up.

Jules [00:02:58]:
Let's just call it like it is. There's way too much. I mean, we spent how many days at Expo? 4 days at

Erica [00:03:04]:
the I think I was there at 6 days, and I'm exhausted just thinking about it.

Jules [00:03:09]:
Yeah. Well, I I have to say that, I finally like, I took a shower today, which was, like, a big step up for me. I know. Right? But I I used something from expo today. And this was something that you you watched me over to their booth, like Camille Rose. Yeah, I know. And I really liked it. This is curl love moisture milk for my hair.

Jules [00:03:35]:
So all the curly girls out there need to know about this product. But it was the thing that you told me at expo, and I was like, what? And then I used it for the laughing out loud.

Erica [00:03:44]:
You said that Smells like ice cream.

Jules [00:03:46]:
Yeah. But you know what it was? I put it in my hair. I smell like sprinkles. Like like, if you nuzzled your face into my hair, it would smell like, you know, I was a giant cupcake. And Mhmm. I was you know what? This is actually I'm okay with that. Like, it pretty much fits who I am, fits my brand. Like, for me to smell like a cupcake with sprinkles on.

Jules [00:04:09]:
Yeah. Oh, yeah. Okay. Alright. I'm going for the Camille Rose with the cupcake.

Erica [00:04:15]:
Yeah. 1 one product recommendation down from Expo West. It's useful. Check. Done. Awesome.

Jules [00:04:21]:
Yeah. I know. And you've been using it for a while. Right? Oh, yeah.

Erica [00:04:24]:
I've been using it for forever, but I just have someone ask me about on my curly girl hair stuff, and I'm like, oh, I have so many products to share with you. That's one of them. But, yeah, I've definitely trialed a bunch of things with Expo West over the years, and some have worked and some of them haven't. But happy that you met that brand.

Jules [00:04:43]:
Yeah. I really I loved the the woman with the boots. She was so nice. But, like, just for a little bit of background, because we get this question every year when we go, what is Expo West, and can I go and why do you get to go and I can't go and all that kind of happy stuff? And it seems weird that I'm bringing up a hair care product, right, for what we do. So Expo West is the largest natural products, expo of the year. And a

Erica [00:05:11]:
trade show.

Jules [00:05:12]:
And trade show. So it it used to be Expo West and Expo East, and, they ended Expo East as of last September. We had our morning period, and you can go back and listen to our to our show recaps from that. But, basically, the whole natural products industry comes together and showcases their new products that they wanna see get carried in stores and retail, and people who wanna get picked up by, by brokers and distributors and things like that. So they have booths. If you've ever been to a consumer one, you know, you know what I'm talking about. You have a booth and people give out samples and things like that. This is like that exponential.

Jules [00:05:53]:
There were 3500 booths at West this year.

Erica [00:05:59]:
60 over 60,000 people.

Jules [00:06:02]:
Yeah. Yeah. And, the only people who can go are food buyers, like, for stores, brokers, distributors, buyers and basically press, which is where Erica and I file into it. You don't go there and like buy something to eat that day and take it home with you from the booth. Like, they're not handing out samples for consumers. It's not like that. Yeah. Right.

Jules [00:06:30]:
So, it's been something we've been going to for years years years. It's different every year in a lot of ways. It's the same every year in a lot of ways. We see a lot of the same brands, but we also see new brands. We see brands come and go. But the the thing that's neat is you get to see these trends. And that's what we want to bring to you through the podcast recaps that we're getting ready to launch into, is what the trends are that you're going to start seeing in your grocery stores or online where you buy your foods and your natural products. But it's not just food, which is why I showed this hair care product.

Jules [00:07:11]:
It's all natural types of products. So it could be pet products. It could be hair care products. It could be cosmetic, skin supplements, you know, all kinds of things like that for the home. Cleaning

Erica [00:07:25]:
products. Yeah.

Jules [00:07:26]:
Cleaning products. Right. In addition to food. And it's obviously not all gluten free. So, it takes a lot of statement. Yes. Even some things that say that they're gluten free are not gluten free. So we are gonna get into that as well.

Jules [00:07:42]:
So Erica and I spend some time doing some education while we're on the show floor as well. But, yeah, so it's it is an exhausting experience. It's probably one reason why I'm sick still, but it's one that we look forward to every year because we like to find all the new stuff that's coming out. And we're gonna try to break it into bite sized pieces. And so you can look at the the show notes and see which pieces you may or may not be interested in and then listen from there.

Erica [00:08:12]:
It's a great recap of what we're trying to do. We'll see if we actually do it. That'd be great. I think one of the goal. One of the biggest issues that we talked about last year, and this has been building for several years, and one of the biggest issues that celiac patients are facing today is the increase of oats in our Yeah. Natural product and non natural product lines, for food. So this can be anything from, again, food, even beverages. We're seeing an increase in non milk alternative milks, nonwheat alternative flours.

Erica [00:08:53]:
And for the majority of those new products being made with these alternatives, they're using oat, oats, rolled oats, oat milk, flour, anything that's made from oats because oats are great. Oats are fantastic. They're high in fiber, they're high in protein, they're high in beta glucans, and they lower your blood sugar, and things are fantastic. The thing is with oats, as we know, and we've talked about it in 1,000,000 episodes that we've done already, is that oats can be cross contact in the field, in the manufacturing facility, in the freaking farm. You know? So there are so many different points of cross contact that oats can commingle with other grains that are not gluten free. Wheat, especially rye, barley, I don't think there's a lot of cross contact in that in the fields, but there's such a possibility that when people test regular conventional oats that are like just quaker oats from the can, that's, like, 5,000 parts per million of gluten. And we're looking for under 20 parts per million, hopefully, a lot less than 20 parts per million if you have celiac disease. So, no, you just can't eat conventional oats.

Erica [00:10:08]:
You've gotta stick to gluten free oats, and you should be using oats that are either GFCO or other certifications knowing that they're under a certain PPM, 10 PPM, 5 PPM, or you're investing in purity protocol oats, meaning they are pure from the start, meaning grown in a dedicated field that hasn't had wheat in it. It is grown away from wheat. They have visual inspections in the field. When they're harvesting it, when they're putting it in the manufacturing facility, it's in a The issue nowadays is that everyone's like, oh, it's great. That's fantastic. Let's add shit in everywhere. So they're adding oat milk into a million different things that don't need to have oat milk in it, or can be used with almond milk or any other sort of milk alternative. They're using oat flour and a lot of gluten free products, but some manufacturers, especially this is worrisome from the General Mills and Kellogg's and Mondelez of the world down to the mom and pop that's at your farmer's market who thinks that using, gluten free oat flour or, sorry, an oat flour is safe in gluten free food when in reality, if they're not using a gluten free oat flour or one that's certified or puree protocol or hell, even like a Bob's Red Mill or something else, they're just using regular oat flour, you're gonna be contaminated.

Erica [00:11:33]:
You're gonna be glutened. And, unfortunately, too many people still don't understand why oats are controversial in the gluten free diet here in America. They understand in other countries. In America, we're like, and that has caused this huge massive problem that we're seeing starting at Expo West. We're seeing more and more people inject these oat based things and saying it's naturally gluten free when in reality, there's nothing naturally gluten free about it because oats been commingled with gluten containing grains since the field. I will now hop off of my little platform, but I'm just like, Jesus, stop adding oats into everything. And if you do, do it the right way.

Jules [00:12:12]:
Right. Well and we had, excuse me, we had, a 101 conversations again this year with manufacturers about their oats. And it's frustrating for us because these companies are bringing these products to market, and they don't know the source of their oats. And, you know, to not know the source, not know whether they're purity protocol oats and to make a gluten free claim is completely well, I mean, it's it's dangerous. It's and it's dangerous for the consumer and it's risky for them as a company. And that's what we're trying to explain explain to them because not all of them really, frankly, care that much whether or not it's honestly risky for the consumer because a lot of these companies, a lot of them are doing it right and they wanna do it right. But a lot of them are like, oh, no, we're just marketing to the fad dieters. No, you're not.

Jules [00:13:10]:
You're marketing to everyone who eats gluten free when you put gluten free on your product. So it's a very long uphill battle of education that we are still slogging through. And that being said, not to beat this dead horse any further. I would like to get into a few of the products that we found, good, bad and ugly, just to let you know what's on the horizon. We've been seeing for a while in the in the drink category that milk is everywhere. And I guess we can tackle that first before we get into the foods. But, you know, I was pleased, to be honest with you, because I, you know, I'm sure you can highlight a few of the brands that still have the oat milk in them in all different places. But I was pleased to see that there were lots of companies who have sort of said, okay.

Jules [00:14:20]:
We're gonna offer oat, you know, lattes, oat milk, whatever, and other things as opposed to just saying oats. So, you know, some of the companies that I was looking at that were new to me, were a company called Fomilk, which is spelled Fomilk, a play on the French word, faux. And, they had pistachio and hazelnut milks, which is, you know, that's different. I saw lots of pistachio products at Expo this year. You know, if you're not nut free, that's kind of exciting to see some different types of products, not just peanuts and not just a standard almond. Tache, if I'm saying that right, I'm not sure. They had pistachio milk lattes. How exciting is that? Like to be able to go pick up pistachio milk latte.

Jules [00:15:14]:
And one of the nice things about these alternative milks with the in the lattes in those categories is that with oat milks, you usually have to add some oils with it in order to get the mouthfeel and the viscosity. And because these nut milks already have oils in them, you don't have to add extra milks like seed oils. And seed oils are, like, a bad word right now for people. And that's another conversation for another day. But, so these, companies are saying, hey. No oils added because we use pistachio or whatever. So, so those were kind of fun. And then the one that I found one of the first days, and I I got as many of them as I could, and we were drinking off of them But they had oat lattes.

Jules [00:16:07]:
Okay. But they also had But they had oat lattes. Okay. But they also had coconut lattes and they had cashew lattes and they were so tasty. So mad respect to the brand for recognizing that there's still gonna be the consumers who want the oats, but there are gonna be other consumers who don't want the oats. And so thank you for doing that. Another brand that we've been talking about for years because they have been doing it right with the Purity Protocol Oates is Elmhurst. .

Jules [00:16:40]:
Purity Protocol Oats and they have always come out every, every west. They have a new product launches that are exciting. And I really I don't know which flavors you tried this year, but I really like the brown sugar oat milk. Oh, yeah. I mean That was so tasty.

Erica [00:16:57]:
All of their coffees are good. I thought you were gonna talk about their sour cream, which is not good. And I'm really bummed out because, like, I really love all their milk lattes, and their new ready to drink lattes are gonna be so amazing when they hit the floor, but they started launching a sour cream, and I am such a snob about sour cream. I'm like Forager all the way, and, I tried it, and it's not texture.

Jules [00:17:21]:
Forager's got a great texture.

Erica [00:17:22]:
And it's not good. And it bumps me out because I wanna support them with literally everything, and I'm like, this isn't it, but, like, thank you for trying. And I love that they're trying to go into other non dairy sections other than coffee because they're like, listen. We tap this market where in all the Sprouts, you know, whatever. They're they're everywhere, which is great because we've seen them grow a ton. But, yeah, I mean, no, that was gross. But their their ready to drink stuff is gonna be really good. They're a great company.

Erica [00:17:51]:
Definitely support them. I think one of their best thing is their lavender latte that they launched last year and their, maple walnut latte that they did last year, their creamer that they did last year. Yeah. That brand's incredible, and they really understand the diversity that consumers are looking for in alternative either milks or alternative coffee products because they have the standard milks, so oat milk, almond milk. They had peanut milk at one point in time, which is which is great for them to try. They have all these different walnut alternatives. Fantastic. And then they, you know, have coffee products, which is great too.

Erica [00:18:34]:
And so they're they're one of the best examples of, like, a really diversification in alternative milks and doing it the right way if you're gonna offer oat.

Jules [00:18:43]:

Erica [00:18:44]:
And we we have no problem. We we should make a statement. We have no problem if you are just a regular ass brand making a regular ass oat milk something. That's fine. If you're sticking a gluten free label on it or saying a naturally gluten free label on it just because you think that you can, that's when we're gonna be pissed. I don't care if you're out there marketing for someone at Circle K who wants to try an oatmeal latte. I don't care. But if you're putting a gluten free label on it, you have to adhere obviously to the FDA, but, like, that means that you have made a commitment to the consumer that is gluten free.

Erica [00:19:21]:
And I don't think that anyone understands the the, I guess what am I trying to say? Like, the devotion to the consumer, your your dedication to the consumer, if you're putting that on and you're using

Jules [00:19:36]:
those gravity of that statement.

Erica [00:19:37]:
I mean, you're really you to make it safe. Mhmm.

Jules [00:19:40]:
Yeah. Well, I think in our conversations with the people at the booths, like and when we say people at the booths, like, we're talking to, you know, not just booth workers at this point, like we're actually talking to people who know what they're talking about. And when you talk to those people and they don't know what they're talking about, that's when it's concerning. And they don't understand that it is important and that it is important to really understand the origin of their oats and to decide whether you're going to just market, as you said, you know, a regular oat product. Fine. But if you are going to go down the path of claiming gluten free, then you really need to understand the the origin and the processing of that product. And I personally, and I've said this before on this podcast, but I personally disagree with the decision of the current independent certifiers to certify oats, that aren't purity protocol because they are still inherently risky, quite risky ingredient. And, because they have hot spots and it's it's just, I think that's the wrong choice.

Jules [00:20:57]:
I think that they have the power to educate and force these brands who want to get a certification to actually do it the right way. And people could keep falling back on there's not enough sourcing. There's not this. There's not. There is. There is. So you're just not buying from the right source at at that point.

Erica [00:21:21]:
Or it's gonna be much more expensive, which I think that that's, I think, one of their issues too. And, like, I get it. I've worked for a certification organization, and I'm no way, a reflection of their thoughts or their actions because I, outside of any of my work and as a celiac consumer, would love any oat product and the certified product to be Purity Protocol. I now work alongside a Purity Protocol oat brand who I love and have been purchasing since I started because I was the celiac who ate regular oats out of the tub of Quaker Oats because nobody told me that I couldn't, and so I was still getting sick for a year after my diagnosis because nobody understood the oat thing. Nobody nobody told me about the o thing or really Mhmm. Helped me fully comprehend the the issue at hand. So I do it so much, and I talk about it all the time because nobody did it to me. And I wish that I had known because it would have been a year into my diagnosis that I saved from, you know, continuing to not absorb nutrients because I was eating oats all the time that were just regular Quaker Oats from the tub.

Erica [00:22:30]:
So it's it's frustrating because I see where we could head as a certification, as a body of, like, say, one of the nonprofits or one of the agencies says, yep. This is what it is. We're gonna only take purity protocol notes. Here's a refined definition of it, and here's all the boxes you have to check. We could do it, but we don't, and I think we don't because brands complain and they don't wanna spend money. And that's reflective of the fact that a lot of the people we talked to included CEOs and CMOs didn't know the source of their oats and didn't really care. They're like, we just know it's gluten free, and I'm like, okay. But is it gluten free from the source? Like, did someone tell you it's gluten free? Is it gluten free certified? Do you do testing? Like, tell me tell me about it.

Erica [00:23:15]:
I'm not expecting I don't expect someone who does sales to know. They should, but I don't. But if you're a CMO or a CEO and you launched a new product and it has oats in it, and I'm like, can you tell me the source or whatever? He's like, well, no. That's proprietary. And I'm like, okay. But can you tell me is it Purity Pro? He's like, I don't really, really know. And I'm like, what's proprietary? You're not gonna tell me what it is. Who the fuck knows? And he's like, well, here's my email.

Erica [00:23:42]:
And I'm like, you're a CEO of a major company. I've played this game. I played this game with Reese's, by the way, Hershey's. Oh, by the way, their CMO still hasn't gotten back to me. After she's like, just email me, and I'll tell you the source right away, lies. So, like, I've I've done I played this game before.

Jules [00:24:00]:
It's all lies.

Erica [00:24:01]:
I played this game before and that's what pisses me off. It's like, if you're not willing to tell me or at least have some sort of odds are, what are you doing? Your CMO or CEO, like, understand your product or, like, actually get back to someone who cares.

Jules [00:24:18]:
Right. Right. And Well and and we have plenty of good examples of companies that do understand and do get it, and they apparently can figure out how to work that cost into their budget and are making a very decent business model out of it. So one of them is Made Good. And we I have an interview with, someone from the booth at made good, and he explains purity protocol and very easy to understand terms and why they use purity protocol. And I think it's really insightful. So I think that we should take a listen. K.

Jules [00:24:56]:
I'm here at the Make Good booth with John, and he's gonna tell us about the oats that they use and their gluten free top 9 allergen free products.

John at Made Good [00:25:05]:
So the oats that we use are organic. They come from Canada. They are purity protocol oats, which means that, any of the farmers that we buy from cannot put any crops on their fields within 3 years of planting their oats to ensure that they are gluten free.

Jules [00:25:23]:
Thank you for that explanation, and we really appreciate you doing the right thing and using purity protocol oats in your products.

John at Made Good [00:25:30]:
Thank you.

Jules [00:25:30]:
Thank you, Made Good. So, I also interviewed the founder of Pitaya

Jules [00:25:37]:
Which is I I love that brand just because I I have been, you know, making smoothies forever, and they it's such a fresh, lovely brand. And, he was he was a joy to interview. But he his brand, they launched new smoothie bowls. And at first, I was concerned because they went out of oats. Like, why did you do that? But we had a long conversation about it. And in fact, they are sourcing your oats from Charity Protocol Oats. And, let's, have a listen.

Jules [00:26:10]:
I'm here with Ben, cofounder of Pitaya Foods. And would you like to tell us what Pitaya means?

Ben of Pitaya Foods [00:26:16]:
Pitaya is the indigenous name for dragon fruit in Central and South America.

Jules [00:26:21]:
I love dragon fruit. And I've been using your dragon fruit products for a long time now. But tell us about your new products.

Ben of Pitaya Foods [00:26:26]:
We got some new products here at the show. We've got ready to eat smoothie balls. This is our clarity bowl. It's got MCTs, coconut, pineapple, blue spirulina. And we're super excited also to have Purity Protocol, gluten free oats in here as well. So very important.

Jules [00:26:43]:
We're all very excited that that's what you chose to use for your product. So thank you so much, and I hope you have a great show.

Ben of Pitaya Foods [00:26:49]:
Thank you so much. Appreciate it.

Erica [00:26:52]:
And I wanna share another brand that I saw that was part of, they have, like, these little, how you say in English, areas or showcases of certain states Mhmm. And, like, certain firm bureaus or whatever will have, like, a collective of people from, like, Virginia or something. And one of the brands was there that was in one of these, like, mini brand showcases, was Nana Joe's, and that's another purity protocol oat brand. And they're just a great woman owned small business that uses purity protocol oats. They also have paleo blends as well, And they just launched a Praline blend, which is with pecans and this evaporated, like, coconut caramel sauce, and it's not overly sweet. Like, it's all very still in the better for you, you know, variety of of, granola, and it is so freaking good. And Matt and I just eat it straight out of the bag, but they were there, and it was lovely to see them. They're fantastic.

Erica [00:28:03]:
I'll share a photo of Nana Joe's and their booth there. I wanted to, showcase that. And then the other one that I wanna tell about, which is the brand that I work with, ZEGO Foods was there, lovely as always. And we've known Colleen for forever. We've talked about ZEGO because they're a Purity Protocol Oat brand. She also has been working on a grant with USDA to help increase, the use of, like, organic agriculture in Montana where she grows the oats that she uses for purity protocol. And she just got a $3,000,000 grant for USDA, organic market development grant, and she is going to use that to help increase the availability of purity protocol grains like oats, which is incredible. We love what Colleen's doing and what she's working on, and she also launched new products.

Erica [00:29:03]:
So she launched a couple new, superfood oatmeal blends, which is gonna be picked up by Thrive Market in May, which is awesome. They're not out yet. We will have samples soon, Jules. We can try some. They have a blueberry lemon poppy, oatmeal that's gonna come out, and it's awesome. And, again, purity protocol. So getting those to the consumer at a price point that consumers can get. So they just don't think that, like, purity protocol oats are like, oh, I can't eat these because they're so expensive.

Erica [00:29:31]:
Like, they are an added cost, right, to freaking any brand that makes a dedication to get purity protocol oats. But, like, there are brands out there doing it right, and they can help you source the oats so you too can have purity protocol oats in your product. And that way, when someone asks a question about how pure your oats are and how gluten free they are, you're like, these are the best level of purity that you can get for oats. Yeah. Like, there are brands out there doing it.

Jules [00:29:59]:
Right. And you're right. Yes. I know. So frustrating.

Erica [00:30:03]:
So, anyway, we're excited for those brands. We love these brands. They're great. Everyone else can really great.

Jules [00:30:11]:
Well and then another brand, which I mentioned, I think, on one of the other podcasts is Bobo's. And, you know, there's all that, you know, people not believing that Bobo's is using

Jules [00:30:23]:
well and I was I actually was supposed to interview the CEO there about it, and he said he would hop on with us later, on the podcast because he and I ended up just talking about personal stuff for the entire time that we had allocated to talk. So, we didn't ever get into it. But, yeah, once again was assured that they are using Purity Protocol Oates and that their supply chain is secure. So for all of those who are looking for snack bars and things like that, Purity Protocol, you know, oats.

Erica [00:31:01]:
And we love the Bobo's new PB&Js

Jules [00:31:03]:
PB and J sandwich cookies. Are

Erica [00:31:02]:
We get them at Costco. Oh my god. So good.

Jules [00:31:08]:
So good. Yeah. They really are very good.

Erica [00:31:10]:
Jules, can I tell you one thing that was probably one of the weirdest things at the show? We're gonna talk about alternative milk. Can we just talk about I

Jules [00:31:20]:
think I

Jules [00:31:21]:
know where you're going with this one.

Erica [00:31:22]:
Can we talk about the corn milk?

Jules [00:31:24]:
The corn milk, Maizely.

Erica [00:31:27]:
I have a video of me being like yeah. It's exactly what if you took a regular milk, like a nondescript flavored milk or alternative milk, and you had frosted flakes, and you ate all the frosted flakes, and then you sipped on that water, that's what it was. But it was, like, just weird cereal milk.

Jules [00:31:51]:
I sort of looked at it and took a picture and just kept going. I I and I just thought about it later. I'm like, I wonder if it had sugar in it. Did it have sugar in it? And the way you're describing it makes it sound a bit

Erica [00:32:02]:
Well, I don't know because corn is so, like, naturally sweet, so I don't I honestly don't know. But that was so weird, and I don't know of a use for that. I don't even wanna bake with it.

Jules [00:31:26]:
I don't know. Was it just was it just used for, like I mean, it was, you know

Erica [00:32:23]:
It came in, like, a container. Like, you were gonna drink

Jules [00:32:26]:
it. I know. But, I mean, were they just trying to, you know, use up the corn that was left over?

Erica [00:32:34]:
And it was nothing like upcycled this is what upcycled were. Like, it was just so wild. That was one of the weirdest things that I've ever drank.

Jules [00:32:43]:
I agree. It was it was strange. I'm glad that one of us tasted it because I didn't. I just was like, that's odd.

Erica [00:32:49]:
And pistachio milk, is slightly better because I have better nut bitter better mouthfeel because it's not

Jules [00:32:59]:
based. Than it's just the oils. So now Well, and that would be better for baking anyway. Because I I always tell people, like, I don't like baking with rice milk for you now, because it just doesn't have, like, the full body to the to the milk because there's just not all the the protein and the fat in it that

Erica [00:33:15]:
makes what corn milk was about. Yeah. Just kinda like water,

Jules [00:33:19]:
you know, with some weird taste to it.

Erica [00:33:21]:
Now I'm looking for corn milk because I'm like, oh, I'm really interested, like, what this is. And there is a lot of, like, corn milk recipes, and I'm like, this looks weird. But it's made with, like, a coconut milk or evaporated milk, and it's like a Thai drink where you're, like, boiling the corn stalks. I'm like, okay. That I can get because you've got that, like, still that fat of another milk in it. This was just straight up corn milk. Milk. Mhmm.

Jules [00:33:50]:
I can like those craze chips, that are made, you know, from corn. Like, you know?

Erica [00:33:57]:
I like I love tortilla chips, but I also don't wanna milk tortilla chips. You know? There's just like something

Jules [00:34:03]:
not eat tortilla chips. No.

Erica [00:34:05]:
There's just something not attractive about it. So, anyway, that was my that was my weirdest thing. I think that a lot of people will think that pistachio milk is the weirdest milk. Not true. Not true. We found corn milk.

Jules [00:32:23]:
You know what? I have another brand for you that also uses purity protocol oats. I just thought of it. And the reason why I didn't think of it was because they are undergoing a new a brand change. Bakery on Main, which, by the way, used to use Purity Protocols, stopped using Purity Protocols, went back to Purity Protocols. I would say that one three times fast. But they are undergoing a branch Oh, they sure are. Called Uncle Krimble. And I actually do have Wait.

Jules [00:34:46]:
What? Uncle Crumbles.

Erica [00:34:52]:
What? Wait. Baker on Main is changing, or they're just launching another brand?

Jules [00:34:57]:
No. They're changing. Let here. Let's watch this video that where I explain it, and we actually get to meet uncle Krimble.

Erica [00:34:49]:
There's an Uncle Crimble? What are you talking about? Are you pulling my leg? Because what the hell is happening to make her a meme?

Jules [00:35:13]:
Nope. I will I will show you the video. Okay.

Jules [00:35:11]:
Hi, y'all. I'm at Natural Products Lost For Lush, and I'm at this brand new booth, Uncle Crumbles. You will not have seen this brand before because it is brand new. It is replacing the Bakery on Main brand, and that means all of these granolas are certified with GFCO

Jules [00:35:54]:
It's perfect. Just trust the guy and the mustache.

Erica [00:35:57]:
Okay. So that is weird. I honestly thought that Jules was just being an asshole and just being like, oh, Uncle Crumbles. That's not true. Because if you go to, it says coming soon. It says, in the meantime, head over to Baker on Main. So that's cool.

Jules [00:36:15]:

Erica [00:36:15]:
So they're just gonna be a new brand.

Jules [00:36:18]:
Yeah. Mhmm.

Erica [00:36:19]:
Thought she was being mean.

Jules [00:36:21]:
Losing it.

Erica [00:35:52]:
So Uncle Crumbles, which that's weird. Good for them. I'm not gonna judge until I see the full branding. They are gonna be Purity Protocol?

Jules [00:36:33]:
Yep. They assured me that they were continuing with their Purity Protocol.

Erica [00:36:31]:
Mhmm. Interesting. Yep. Alright. Well, I guess we'll see where that brand goes from there, but look for the transition from Bakery on Main to Uncle Crumbles.

Jules [00:36:48]:
There we go. Now another brand, though, that has it makes, like, an oatmeal like thing, but it was no oats at all. If you're, like, one of the 8% who says, I don't care if it's purity protocol or not, I can't do oats, but you wanna have your morning oatmeal. Check out Chi Chi grain free oatmeal. Erica and I found them in the hot products area, and we have a little video from them as well. This was started by these 2 girls in college who wanted to have oatmeal, but couldn't have the oats or something. I don't remember what she said. But she they were adding, like, protein to the oats, and it didn't taste good.

Jules [00:37:30]:
So then they started making oatmeal out of, chickpeas, which doesn't sound good at all. But it looked like oatmeal, and it actually tasted good. And the these girls could not have been any cuter. And I'm

Erica [00:37:43]:
all about,

Jules [00:37:44]:
like, rah rah rah female entrepreneurs starting in college. I mean, like, so cute. So let's watch the video. You'll see for yourself and you'll hear how enthusiastic this girl is about her brand.

Izzy with Chi Chi [00:37:55]:
Hi. My name is Izzy and this is Chi Chi. We started in college because we were adding protein powder to oats, and it doesn't taste good, makes your stomach hurt. So we replaced it with chickpeas instead, and it's instant chickpea oatmeal. It comes in 4 flavors, maple, original, apple pie, and banana bread. So check us out on Instagram. Chickpea Oats.

Jules [00:38:12]:
Gluten free and vegan. Yes. Yay. Thanks a lot.

Erica [00:38:16]:
So another another coffee ready to drink coffee that we forgot because we're hiked up on coffee to talk about all these ready to drink coffee things. I survived off the La Colombe or La Colom, whatever we know. That's like a fan it's a fancy coffee drink that has or fancy coffee brand that has ready to drink coffee drinks. Now they did have one of the oat milk, and I'm like, and then I looked, and it's now GFCO certified. So thank god that means that they have looked at the oats. They've gone through a verification process. They are submitting test results. Things are good with those oats.

Erica [00:38:48]:
So it is so great to see, like, a high end, but also readily available, ready to drink coffee.

Jules [00:38:54]:
Yeah. It's like a distribution.

Erica [00:38:56]:
You know? Like, 7-Eleven. Like, that's where you're gonna find this stuff, which is awesome. Right. And they have an oat milk that's certified gluten free, so I was living off of those. Because sometimes you can't find another nondairy drink, like, especially if you're traveling. Like, you can't just get Groundwork, cashew milk latte. I'd love to see that everywhere, but, unfortunately, you can't. So you've got to deal with whatever is in the grocery store.

Erica [00:39:17]:
And if you go to, like, a mainstream grocery grocery store, you're probably gonna find a brand like La Columbe for $5, but it's still gonna be a latte that's gonna be, you know, GFCO certified and safe.

Jules [00:39:31]:
Well, the other thing that it says about them, whenever you see a mainstream brand like that going to the trouble of getting GFCO certified, is that they recognize that they are selling to a gluten free consumer who needs that assurance that they have been audited and and tested, and someone's looking over their shoulder and making sure that the product is truly gluten free. And so I totally support that. Yeah. Shout out to them. Yeah. Commend them for going to that, extra step. On the other end of the spectrum, I don't know if you saw the story that I posted or not. I went to Planet Oat to ask about their oats.

Jules [00:40:18]:
And the guy there was hilarious. Very, very nice guy. But he said, there is no such thing as purity protocol oats. I was like, oh. And he said, no one can can ever tell you that their oats are definitely pure. They're all contaminated, and there's no way to be sure that your oats are contaminated and there are no safe oats. And so if you have celiac disease, you should just go over the booth over there and go have almond milk.

Erica [00:40:53]:
That's so useful. I was like, oh, thanks.

Jules [00:40:56]:
I appreciate you educating me.

Erica [00:41:00]:
I don't understand. Like, where is this person getting his information from?

Jules [00:41:05]:
I well, apparently, we don't know anything, Erica. Duh.

Erica [00:41:08]:
Yikes. I just wanna, like, see at least in his office, like, a like, the printout of the, like, whatever agriculture society, like, had the purity protocol oat paper, like, sent to Patricia Thompson. We're good to go.

Jules [00:41:24]:
It's like it's like, which one of the 3 articles on purity protocol oats from my website should I send you?

Erica [00:41:30]:
I guess what I just don't understand is, like, these these large c level employees, either they don't understand or they have, obviously, completely different definition of what they think that they should be doing. But the fact that you're not even trying to understand that there's a safe o for anyone who has celiac disease, like, that's wild to me. So No. Cool.

Jules [00:41:48]:
No. No. But basically, you're saying, like, you can't you can't verify the supply chain at all ever. I'm, like, that's scary. What what else is can you not verify in your supply chain? Like, I don't know, dude. Like, just

Erica [00:42:04]:
go away. And he says that his oat milk is free from gluten

Jules [00:42:08]:
Yeah. On the website. Yeah. But it's not pure.

Erica [00:42:15]:
Oh, okay.

Jules [00:42:17]:
Not purely from from gluten. It it's got some. I mean, that's that's the kind of stuff you see when you go to expo. The way you're like, now I see where the brand really stands, you know?

Erica [00:42:31]:
Yeah. It's frustrating. We did talk to a lot of C-levels that said weird shit to us. Honestly, I just, like, it's that and then, like, really good things, and you get, like, super encouraged about, like, where the industry is going. And then you talk to CEO and you're like it's like, what? Especially if it's a brand that you, like, know and love, and then they say something super off base or super wild, and you're just like, what? Or Yeah. Or you're at a booth and, like, Califia did last year. They launched their pure line, where it's, like, pure oat milk. And so I went, and I'm like, is this the same gluten free oats that you're using for other things? I'm like, no.

Erica [00:43:12]:
It's just regular oats for, like, regular people. I'm like, oh, okay. Well, that's gonna be a problem when baristas who were using the Califia Farms oat milk that is gluten free switch over to a simple oat milk that is not gluten free. That's a problem. Yep. Mhmm. Or if they, I don't know, wait for it, serve you a latte that also has cookies inside of it secretly.

Jules [00:43:37]:
Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. No. It's a it's a, you know, vegan booth, and they're serving coffee. And it's not and I was not tasting the oat milk, by the way. It was almonds. And they put cookie crumbles in it.

Jules [00:43:59]:
That was lovely.

Erica [00:44:00]:
At least with Starbucks, it says on there when they launch a new recipe, and it's like top of cookie crumbles. So we can be like, okay. If you order this, don't get the cookie crumbles. They just, like, straight up were like, oh, is this using the almond milk? Yep. And it's like, oh, also, after you've already drank it, watch out for the kushie crumbles at the bottom.

Jules [00:44:16]:
Like, what was that chunky thing? Like, oh. Oh, I see. Oh, and then I tell you after, like, I took one little sip and I was like, and and he goes, oh, it has cookies in it too. And I'm like, what? And he goes, but they're vegan.

Erica [00:44:32]:
At least they're vegan, Jules. At least it wasn't. I mean, honestly, at that point, you would have been like, if it was a piece of ground beef, it probably would have done better for me than if it was a chunk of gluten containing vegan cookies.

Jules [00:44:46]:
Dude, like, you're at freaking natural products, and you guys don't get it in terms of sampling. You just don't get it. Like, you have to put everything on a sign or you you just shouldn't. Like, all these brands that are sampling vegan cheeses and they put them on gluten crackers, you know, or, like, or they're they're sampling, like, gluten free, you know, pizza crust rubber, and they put, you know, v they put regular cheese and meat and stuff all over it. Like, aren't you sampling to the lowest common denominator so that the most people can taste your product? Like, so that so that we can see whether or not people like it.

Erica [00:45:30]:
And I'm like, if that's what you wanna do, go for it. Like, you alienate half of your base. That's fine. What I love is when people are like, hey. This is served on a cracker. I'm more than happy to get you something from the back that has not touched gluten. Thank you. Or if you're looking for something and it, like, is served on this, we also have gluten free crackers, and I can have you serve it on that.

Erica [00:45:51]:
Like, there are so many booths that know that there are so many people out there that have certain dietary needs that they're gonna need to have diverse sampling.

Jules [00:46:00]:

Erica [00:46:00]:
But then there's also the idiots that are just, like, here's a cookie inside of a Right. A a thing that is gluten free, but now it's not gluten free because all I care about right now is vegan. Right. Great. Yay.

Jules [00:46:12]:
Mhmm. Yep.

Erica [00:46:13]:
I just I love the boost that we're like, hey. This sample contains this. This sample contains that. I have loved seeing that over the years, and we've always had to ask questions about samples, but I have loved seeing that over the years that more and more people are starting to be, like, the sample contains dairy or the sample contains meat or the sample contains blah blah blah. Like, they're finally getting it. After so like, there was, like, a vegan influencer that was served, like, a meat containing product or something, like, that caused a controversy. You get served gluten. We had so many people this year in the influencer space getting served gluten containing products instead of the gluten free version.

Erica [00:46:53]:
So that happened a lot, and, it's no different every year. It happens every year. So the more and more that they can understand that there are, like, sampling biases and that people in the booth actually have to know the ingredients down to, I don't know, where your oats come from, that's an important part.

Jules [00:47:08]:
Right. Well, it's just like it it was so frustrating for me at that moment because, obviously, I asked 7,000 questions before I taste a bite of food at Express. Yeah. But when I get to a coffee booth Yeah. And I'm I'm not drinking oats, and it doesn't have dairy. It's vegan, and it's a brand I know that is gluten free. Their almond products are gluten free. And it's almond milk or their almond creamer and coffee.

Jules [00:47:36]:
Like, okay. On me, I didn't ask then, is this also a gluten free coffee? Mhmm. But at that point, like anyway, it's just it's freaking exhausting. Yeah. It's exhausting. Sure is.

Erica [00:47:55]:
Sure is, Jules. Alright. What a great place to end this episode on just a really space of super frustration and just, like, wanting to murder someone. Wait.

Jules [00:48:05]:
We should definitely end it on that. On a high note. Let me end it on a high note. Please. I will tell you one of my favorite finds, and this is probably just because I've had kids who love those whipped topping containers that, like, you shoot out whipped topping, you know, with them instead of just like a cool whip where you scoop it. More fun.

Jules [00:48:26]:
You know

Jules [00:48:26]:
what I'm talking about? Yeah. It's way more fun. What is what is it called, though? It's just like a liquid tap. Yeah. Yeah. There's a can, you know, that it, like, shoots the stuff out.

Erica [00:48:36]:
Like an aerosol can?

Jules [00:48:38]:
Yeah. You keep it in the refrigerator. Well, so there was this brand that I found, and and you may have seen them. It's called Whipt, w h I p t, Whipt. Did you see them? No. So they had all these different whipped toppings, and they were so good. And they had oat was one of them, but I didn't even go there. They had almond and coconut that were so good.

Jules [00:49:09]:
So so good. And, I mean, I'm telling you, they were better than any other, like, dairy free whipped topping container that I've ever tasted.

Erica [00:49:18]:

Jules [00:49:20]:
So good. The, and the coconut was, like, so good.

Erica [00:49:24]:
Interesting. They look really good. Again Yeah. Difficult because of the oat, and maybe we'll talk to them at a point in time. But, I mean, I love whipped cream cans. We get the, the GFCO certified oat topping. That's Whole Foods branded because it's GFCO certified, And I always look for more, like, nondairy. So Trader Joe's has a brand that's coconut.

Erica [00:49:51]:
It's okay. It's not my favorite, but I'm always looking for more. Like, this whipped cream is fun regardless. Like, we can I can't go to Starbucks and get the whipped cream, you know, so to make it at home and to make a latte, that's awesome? I would make a joke about whippets right now, but it doesn't feel right. But you did say to end on a high note. So

Jules [00:50:20]:
Alright. Okay. Good. Sounds good.

Erica [00:50:22]:
We hope you had a great time on this episode that you had me eat where we really just talked all about oats. And if you're interested in tuning into our next few, episodes about Expo West, you'll see all of the amazing things that we are talking about from the show floor. We're gonna talk less about Juul's getting gluten and more about things like gluten free dairy free mac and cheeses, gluten free pretzels, gluten free comfort food, sparkling water, and some yummy, yummy sweets that you cannot wait to get your hands on. Yep.

Jules [00:50:54]:
Sounds like the plan.

Erica [00:50:55]:
Check out the next edition of the specialty expo west episodes from You Had We Eat coming at you soon.

Jules [00:51:04]:
Be sure to like and subscribe so you don't miss the next drop, and tell all your friends about, your favorite gluten free podcast.

Erica [00:51:13]:
And for real, leave a review if you're nice. We would really appreciate one. Thank you so much. Goodbye.

Jules [00:51:22]:
Thanks for tuning in to You Have Me At Eat, the number one voted gluten free podcast in the country. Remember to like and subscribe. Tell all your friends And we'll talk to you next time.