Gluten-Free Girl Products Are Coming, Starting With FlourBy
Fans of Shauna Ahern know her as the Gluten-Free Girl from her blog, which she’s kept since 2005, drawing about 500,000 readers each month, and from her James Beard Award-winning cookbook. Now she’s trying to reach gluten-free consumers through their cupboards with a new line of flours, starting with an all-purpose blend that’s also dairy-free, egg-free, peanut-free, corn-free, soy-free, tree nut-free, and fish and shellfish-free.
Ahern’s Kickstarter campaign to launch Gluten-Free Girl Flour Blends reached its $79,000 goal on Friday with some help from actress and writer Lena Dunham, who mentioned the campaign to her 1.8 million followers on Wednesday night.
Ahern’s all-purpose flour recipe is no secret. She had already published the recipe—a combination of sorghum flour, millet flour, sweet rice flour, and potato starch—but readers weren’t too thrilled about having to get all the ingredients to make their own mix. Ahern tried to show how easy it was to customize the mix in a video, but her followers continued to ask to buy it from her. “After a few years, I thought, ‘Well, now we’re just being dumb by not listening,’” she says.
With additional funding, she also plans to make a grain-free flour blend. Ahern says flour is just the start of her food products venture. “This feels much bigger than writing a blog or a cookbook,” she says. “We’d like to get this into the hands of anyone who is gluten-free and anyone who has friends or family who eat gluten-free.”
Other gluten-free flours are available on the market—Boulder Brands makes one under its Glutino label, for instance—but the gluten-free market is growing and Ahern has the advantage of being a well-known personality in that world.
The Gluten-Free Girl Flour will be produced by an Idaho company called ZoRoCo Packaging. About 10,000 pounds of the all-purpose flour, packaged in 20-oz. boxes, will be made to fulfill Kickstarter commitments. Ahern will also sell the product on her website as well as on Amazon.com. Ahern hasn’t set a price yet but says her flours will be “competitively priced” with most comparable products on the market.