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Flackwell Heath chip shop serves up a treat for gluten-free Wednesdays
A CHIP shop in Flackwell Heath is frying up a treat for Coeliacs by introducing gluten-free batter in its food.
Frackle Fryers on Heath End Road decided to devote an entire fryer to wheat-free products every Wednesday to help the hundreds of coeliacs living in the area.
Coeliac disease is autoimmune condition which prevents sufferers from eating products containing wheat, barley or rye, and can be diagnosed by visiting a GP.
The disease affects one in 100 people, and chip shop owner Dal Singh decided to do something to help after talking to coeliac customers unable to eat almost everything on the menu.
He said: "I didn’t realise how many people were affected, so after talking to customers I decided to dedicate a day to making our food gluten-free.
"We use a different fryer so there’s no chance of contamination from the wheat batter, and while the batter is four times more expensive we don’t charge more for the food.
"People who’ve tried it so far seem to like it. We’re offering the nation’s favourite food to a whole section of people who would otherwise not be able to eat it."
Brian Barnes, chairman of the Bucks branch of support group Coeliac UK, which has around 750 members, has already sampled Dal’s fish and chips and has welcomed the move.
Brian, who was diagnosed 20 years ago, said the condition is often misunderstood.
He believes chefs and food producers should do more research on the disease, which affects over half a million people in the UK.
He said: "We very much welcome this, it’s a great idea. For most people, fish and chips is just fish and chips but if you are a coeliac and haven’t had them for years it’s a real treat.
"While gluten-free foods are becoming more common, it’s still very hard to find places offering things like fish and chips.
"The disease is still misunderstood, - it’s just ignorance really. The worst thing is going to events like weddings and having to make your case very clearly.
"To put it in context, I was in supermarket that was offering gluten-free pate, but they put breadsticks beside it for people to eat the pate with!"
Frackle Fryers’ gluten free offer is available on Wednesdays from 11.30am until 2.30pm for lunch and between 4.30 and 9.30pm for dinner.
For more information on Coeliac disease, or to get in touch with the support group, visit Coeliac UK at www.coeliac.org.uk
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