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February 25, 2007

Author Upsets the Child Food Allergy Community

You may have heard of the author Todd Wilbur, not exactly a friend of the food allergy crowd. Mr. Wilbur recreates restaurant recipes and reprints them in book form. Apparently he's been pretty successful, including a spot on the Oprah show.

Well, anyway, he upset quite a few folks in the child food allergy community by making this comment in a recent article

"On the 'Oprah' show, I faked a food allergy to get the T.G.I. Friday's Jack Daniel's grill glaze ingredients."

Oh boy, faking a food allergy? You shouldn't have done that, Mr. Wilbur. Here is what some parent said online...

"What's next in you career, feigning CANCER? Do copyright laws mean nothing to you? Why aren't you in jail?"

"...How dare u pretend to be allergic to something and make all this money while many of us have children who are very allergic to foods. ... Wake up and think of other people in this world not just your own."

"...I spend a lot of time contacting manufacturers, trying to find out if there is something in their products that would kill my child. I never understood why many manufacturers would ask for a doctor's note to release information on ingredients. After reading this article about Mr. Wilbur making a mockery of life threatening food allergies, I now know why it is so difficult to gather information to keep my child safe. This man should be ashamed of himself."

"...I have spent hours on the phone with companies making sure that the product won't kill my son. This just makes it harder for me to get the information I need to keep my son alive and healthy."

"Talk about self-serving!!! How could you PRETEND to have food allergies basically to STEAL recipes for profit? You should be ashamed of yourself. Did you ever stop to think that by doing this you might actually make it more difficult for the parents of children who really and truly suffer from food allergies to keep their children safe....and even alive?..."

STRONG reaction from food allergy parents. And I have to agree on this one. First off, the restaurant biz is hard enough but I'll leave the copywrite issues alone... I am much more concerned about using a real, life-threatening condition under false pretenses to gather proprietary information.

Mr. Wilbur, your methods make our lives as food allergy parents more difficult and we ask that you stop using that data collection method. And Oprah? Well, guests like this are likely not adding to your fan base.

Posted by David at February 25, 2007 9:42 PM


I think this man should be prosecuted for fraud.

I have REAL food allergies and I can't go out to eat due to this type of behavior.



Posted by: MLO at February 26, 2007 1:22 PM

Thanks for sharing that. Now you know I had to join the Detroit Free Press just so I could leave a comment :)

Posted by: ChupieandJsmama at February 27, 2007 2:11 PM