This open letter has also been emailed to Martin Hansson, UK MD of IKEA
Sunday, 7 October 2012
An open letter to express my anger at IKEA
I dont rant on this blog, in fact this is the first time I have ever posted an 'open letter'. The reason I am targeting IKEA is because I like the brand, I genuinely do, they have cost effective yet stylish furniture, the showroom provides great inspiration, I don't even mind when it's busy, and I USED to love the restaurant. This is the basis for my rant, my husband is a long time lover of the meatballs and chips and I used to happy go along with his requests to 'pop in' to IKEA knowing we would be headed straight to the restaurant because I was kept happy with the gluten free kids fish and chips, well labelled on big white boards, followed by gluten free almondy cake, a delight! Even when I had a small baby we still loved going, the private baby feeding area in the restaurant did even more to enhance my love for the brand. Then one day I arrived at IKEA and gone was the gluten free kids fish and chips, gone was the clear gluten free labelling and gone was the Almondy cake!! I asked one of the staff what was gluten free for me to eat and was told he 'couldn't guarantee anything' I turned away angry and upset, my husband and son were already loaded up with meatballs making their way to a table, then I got mad, I asked to speak to the supervisor, a young guy looked a bit scared and went to find someone but within minutes he explained I would need to go downstairs and talk to someone in the bistro, I politely explained that my family were in the restaurant gobbling up meatballs and I just wanted something to eat, the supervisor finally came to speak to me and I again explained I just wanted to join my family with some food, and just wanted to know what was gluten free, he said he would need to check so went away (I had been waiting a LONG TIME by this point, when he came back, he told me the chips, veg and soup, as well as the IKEA version of the Almondy cake were gluten free and safe for me to eat. I went ahead and ordered some chips with a side order of veg along with some IKEA almondy cake. I am pretty disappointed with the service I received that day by the staff, and am angry that IKEA have gone backwards in terms of labelling and choice for people needing a gluten free diet. I hope that this rant might go some small way to inspiring IKEA to go back to the time when there was a clear option for people needing to avoid gluten, that the previously clear labelling be reinstated and if cross contamination can't be avoided any longer in their kitchens well why not bring in some Fria gluten free products that are Swedish and amazing? Sort it out IKEA, I will be resisting my husbands pleas in the meantime.