Looking for more ways to live without gluten? The Gluten Free Expo and Information Fair, sponsored by Ingles Markets, takes place on on Saturday, March 24 from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the Renaissance Hotel in downtown Asheville.
"This year we have 55 confirmed vendors and we usually try to get a mix of national vendors, nonprofits and locals," says Ingles dietitian Leah McGrath. "We have people like Dolce de Maria, World's Best Carrot Cake, and some new people like Roots — their hummus is going to be in our store come summertime." It's the largest selection of vendors yet, says McGrath. "It keeps growing — but we're not really concerned about having the biggest fair, we just want a quality fair with vendors that we think are really going to help people find alternatives to products containing gluten."
Gluten-free beverages and breakfast meats, breads and desserts will all be available for tasting — and safe tasting at that. This year, vendors are required to provide allergy information, useful for those with a severe gluten intolerance. "There's a lot of different shades of gluten-free," McGrath says. "There [are facilities] who use gluten-free ingredients, [those] who have a dedicated gluten-free facility and [those] that don't have a gluten-free facility, but take special precautions. So we've addressed that."
Cost to attend the fair is $5. For more information about the expo and other gluten-free events happening that weekend, visit http://ashevillegig.org.