ALLCANEAT Foods Ltd. Goes Against the Grain
Local Baker George Moufarrej starts gluten-free food product line at the former Zeppy's Bagel Facility in Randolph, Mass.
Article by Eric J. Hurwitz
George Moufarrej is on a roll -- the gluten-free kind, of course.
When customers continuously came into Moufarrej's Fresh Start Bakery in Walpole, Mass., asking about gluten-free products, he decided to investigate the medical validity of such a diet and what products were available on the market.
Moufarrej first found some startling information in relation to how gluten affects Celiac's disease, an autoimmune digestive disease that damages the villi of the small intestine and interferes with absorption of nutrients from food. With one in 133 Americans known to have Celiac's disease (some other estimates are much higher), Moufarrej found that there has been a substantial amount of anecdotal reports of autism, diabetes, depression, intestinal cancer and other diseases that coexist with Celiac's.
Knowing that the only treatment, at this time, for Celiac's disease is a gluten-free diet, Moufarrej soon met with doctors and those personally challenged with the ailment so that he could figure a way to create a food product line tasting every bit as good as the gluten versions.
Through the tireless research and development -- as well as forming a team of dedicated local business people -- Moufarrej launched ALLCANEAT Foods Ltd., in a 35,000 sq. ft. facility that opened on June 6, 2010, at the former Zeppy's Bagel site in Randolph, Mass. ALLCANEAT offers "gluten- and allergenic-free foods (breads, pizza shells, cakes, cookies, etc.) the whole family will enjoy as well as providing for people afflicted with celiac disease and other allergic disorders where a gluten- and allergenic-free diet is essential for good health." The facility includes a retail store/cafe.
Moufarrej has been so focused on ALLCANEAT that he recently sold the Fresh Start Bakery in Walpole to concentrate on this mission. He hopes that the gluten-free concept simplifies meal preparation for families with someone suffering from Celiac's.
"The name 'ALLCANEAT' refers to everyone in the family being able to eat our foods," said Moufarrej. "No more separate diets, refrigerators. We want to bring the family back to simplicity when it comes to meals. This isn't about offering foods to people with Celiac's, but about feeding the whole family. We feel we have some delicious foods that everyone can eat."
Moufarrej uses a variety of gluten-free ingredients to create the ALLCANEAT foods, including rice flour, amaranth, millet, quinoa, and teff. Going great lengths to create an allergy-free environment and products, Moufarej does not use genetically modified (GMOs) ingredients and artificial colors. The facility is 100 percent free of common allergenic foods, including nuts, sesame, and soy. Unrefined sugar -- with all
its trace minerals and nutrients intact -- replaces the nutrient-void yet common refined sugar.
ALLCANEAT President Diane Sterrett is now a believer in the gluten-free diet, seeing first-hand how those affected by Celiac's reacted to Moufarej's gluten-free products.
"The first time I heard about 'gluten-free,' I said to George 'What the heck is gluten free?'" said Sterrett. "These people were literally in tears, wanting to hug him for creating these foods. In the past, they had little selection at the stores and the taste was not good, in many cases. Also, kids with Celiac's can't have a sandwich. Here, we give them our gluten-free bread and they are fine. A lady had tears in her eyes, telling us she had no reaction to bread after 45 minutes. We're so excited about this new business!"
ALLCANEAT is located at 937 North Main St., Randolph, Mass. Tel. 1-888-NO-GLUTEN
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