So, following on from all that bracken – where are we taking the FoodsMatter empire?
I cannot deny that James’ totally unexpected death in August has certainly made me think very carefully about what it is that we have been and should be doing. In purely practical terms, he ran all of our IT and our websites – as well as doing any video work we needed, being the general go-to person for any remotely technical problems and – most important of all – being a sensible but ‘out-of-the-box’ mentor who could be relied on to bring sanity to some of my wilder ideas.
The first casualty was, and remains, the newsletter. James had some rather convoluted way of distributing it through Google which did not cost us anything but which only he understood. Since neither the newsletter nor the Foodsmatter website have ever been remotely commercially viable, paying for distribution had to be questionable. Since all that the newsletter did, effectively, was to point readers towards new information on the FoodsMatter site and elsewhere, we have decided to dispense with it as an intermediary.
So we will still be posting new articles on the FoodsMatter site. I posted one from Alex on the Nima Gluten Sensor today and a report on presentations on the evolution of food allergy management from Dr Adam Fox and dietitian Julia Marriott last week. And we will also use the home page of the FoodsMatter site to alert readers to other matters of interest which may not be on our site – such as a free on line event on managing tic disorders run by Latitudes in the US that I posted this evening.
We will also post links to interesting bits of research unearthed for us by Kate Lawrence who had made such great contributions to the newsletter over the last couple of years.
We will not, for the moment, be posting any of Katherine’s excellent freefrom recipes but… Hopefully they will reappear in due course as Berrydales Books – more anon.
As for new ‘freefrom’ foods. Cressida now has a very active Freefrom Food Awards social media life (Facebook – Twitter) where she posts regularly about exciting new launches and everything in the freefrom food world.
Blogs, Social media – and podcasts?
I am, as you will realise, continuing with my blog – and, of course, the garden blog! I am also continuing to post on the FoodsMatter Facebook page although I am afraid that I am now giving Twitter a miss. I am also hoping to play a more active role on Linked In.
And we have already talked about using some of the massive amount of the material on the FoodsMatter site for a series of podcasts. However, that might need to wait till a little later in the year.
The FreeFrom Food, Eating Out and Skincare Awards
The FreeFrom Food Awards go from strength to strength under Cressida’s guidance. We are in full flow right now with the judging for 2019 starting in about ten days time. A shortlist will be published in mid February and we will be having the usual FreeFrom Food Awards amazing freefrom networking party, presentation and winners’ buffet at the Royal College on Physicians on March 20th.
The FreeFrom Eating Out Awards have just completed their fifth year and we feel that this is the moment to take a look at them and see where we want to go with them. So we have been consulting with many of those who are or have been involved with them – including Kathy, their coordinator for the last two years, and BenjaminRichardson of ForEver FreeFrom who created our wonderful awards’ Google map for us. Watch this space for where we go with them.
The FreeFrom Skincare Awards, under the guidance of Alex (Gazzola) and Kirsty (of Skin Insight) and about to launch into their ninth year, now operate entirely online and are also flourishing. Indeed, expanding this year to include entries from across the EU. They will open on March 1st and we look forward to an exciting year’s entries.
Since Sally Beck joined us in May, life has been rather traumatic… She had scarcely settled into her role when James got ill and died – which meant that I was effectively out of operation for about four months.
However, she nobly dug in and saw both Micki Rose’s first book (8 Step Healing Plan – Recovery from Chronic Illness with Mind-Body Medicine) and Enid Taylor’s 50 Foods Challenge: Feed your microbiome and improve your gut health onto the Amazon site and the market.
She also edited our next beginner’s guide – The Beginners’Guide to the Medical use of Cannabis by Professor Mike Barnes – which will be out in the next couple of months. It is just about to go to our ‘readers’ to make sure that it really is a ‘beginners’ guide’ and then it is on its way.
Meanwhile Dr Janice Joneja’s Beginners’ Guide to Histamine Intolerance and Comprehensive Guide to Histamine Intolerance continue to sell well over ten copies every day. They will be joined very soon by 100 Low Histamine Recipes and, since the Beginners’Guide has now been out for nearly two years, we will be bringing out a new edition later in 2019.
Returning to recipes, we are also planning a Gluten-free Vegan Recipe Book, which will include both Katherine’s and my recipes from the FM site, and an expanded version of our original FreeFrom al’ Italiana with Anna del Conte. The original contained only pasta and rice recipes but we will now be going not just for pasta, polenta and rice, but for meat, fish, vegetable dishes and desserts. They will all be gluten free and many will also be vegan.
Meanwhile, we have a long list of possibilities for Beginners’ Guides including MCAD, ACEs (Adverse Childhood Events), managing anaphylaxis, managing teenage screen addictions and a beginner’s guide to managing video game addiction…..
So, most definitely, watch this space.