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Tomorrow kicks off Coeliac UK's gluten free guarantee week, and the charity has asked bloggers to write about their local supermarkets and their free from offerings. Great, I thought, the Tesco Extra in Barnstaple, North Devon, is pretty good, so I went along to check it out in preparation for a blog post.
I did, however, have my weekend ruined when I discovered the store had decided to stop stocking my absolute favourite gluten free product - the Dietary Specials Bella Italia Salame pizza. Great timing Tesco, great timing.
You see, apparently there has been a decline in sales*.
* This, coincidentally, seems to have occurred at around the same time I started eating a low-carb diet and therefore stopped buying pizzas so regularly. Perhaps me and my pizza addiction were the only ones keeping the gluten free frozen aisle afloat?
What I find even more disheartening though, is that they have replaced the most amazing, wonderful, truly delicious gluten free pizza with this....
I wanted to see past the negative reviews I had read so far. I wanted so badly for it to be good. But, I'm sorry Tesco, this gluten and wheat free BBQ chicken pizza, it was such a disappointment, and even more so compared to how good the Dietary Specials one was.
The BBQ sauce wasn't very strong - I could hardly taste it, and although the topping was more generous than some gluten free pizzas, I found myself adding extra cheese. The chicken seemed flavourless - I did like the onions on top though. And the base, well, by the time it was cooked the crusts were so crunchy they disintegrated and I wasn't very impressed with the rest of it.
I understand that demand is not always high for free from products. But often, people want these things available to buy when they want a treat, not to scoff on a daily basis (oh, I wish). People on a gluten free diet tend to be a) more health concious and b) pay at least twice as much for GF products so these are often bought more as a treat.
So no, gluten free pizzas may not be flying from the freezers at a rate of knots, but can we at least have some decent ones, instead of filling the shelves with free from foods people will try once, and never buy again?
I'll be trying to blog as much as possible throughout the gluten free guarantee week, and I want your help! Send me a snap of your free from aisle – however good or bad its offerings are – to email@example.com, tweet me @GFBlogger or post it on the Gluten Free Blogger’s Facebook page!
Tesco pizzas are atrocious! I'm away with work this week and can't take any pictures of my local supermarkets which are pretty mediocre with their offers. Hope you get lots of people helping you out!
I couldn't agree more. Cardboard is a polite / almost generous description.
Haven't tried the Pizza, what is annoying though is when you go along and they don't have (sometimes for weeks) the things you are looking for. I live right next to the store you mentioned. Recently Tesco started doing a free from cous couse, excellent it is to. However can I get a packet? Not for weeks, had to go back to Asda in Bideford just to buy one that they do. Its so annoying that basics, like this aren't stocked more frequently so that people who are gluten or and in my case diary intolerant can get to know they are there and then buy them as a result. Rather than this pick and mix affair.
However to end on a good note, they have stocked their own brand bread, and though not as good as Genius, it is the size of a normal loaf at last.
I agree1 You find something you like for it to be discontinued due to 'lack of demand' I wish they stocked the Bella Italia cheese and tomato pizza. Thats the best one I've tried and its so hard to find.
Too damn true...
This is so annoying...my local mini Sainsburies simply stopped selling my Genius bread because there wasn't the demand for it- I was like hello??? I am the flipping demand! I was so angry! Yes I've tried this pizza and it's simply not worth the carb and calorie overload...yuk!
Hi. The bonta d'italia salami pizza was the best on the market by a mile, with extra toppings it was perfection (nearly). It was always my fear that tesco would stop selling it and that's now the case. I contacted my tesco extra store and they said there is no plan to order it and the same for other local stores. I spoke to Dietary Specials and they were unaware of the issue and it was on!y after I told them that tesco has stopped selling other D's products that they made more enquiries and called me back to say there was nothing they could do and the best thing would be to contact the store directly and ask them to order...or shop with Ocado.
Not happy at all. I also think that the Georgia's choice pizza is being pushed or backed by tesco.