The toughest message for us to communicate at the moment is how we can simultaneously make Rude Health dairy-free drinks and support raw, whole and unhomogenised milk.
It’s tricky for us to convey this message because the current fad is to be either for or against certain foods or food groups. If you are for ‘clean eating’ you are against meat, dairy, gluten and sugar. Meaning, I suppose, that if you are for these things then you are into ‘dirty eating’. Where’s the space for those of us ‘just eating’ or, in our case, ‘eating right’?
The inevitable and welcome clean eating backlash has got the bit between its teeth, but it’s just the latest in a series of food fads that we’ve seen come and go in our 10 years of running Rude Health. It would be easy and commercially sensible for us to ride some of these fads, at least in the short term. Most of our food and drink is dairy and wheat-free and low in sugar - and popular with clean eaters. We would certainly offend fewer people, however, if we stopped ranting about good dairy.
But we don’t make these foods because they are ‘clean’, we make them to offer the maximum nourishment and enjoyment. It’s entirely possible to both support dairy-free drinks that are delicious and aren’t full of gums and carrageenan, and to promote dairy that comes with all the fat it comes with, in its natural state. They are both the best of their breed. So that’s what we have been doing for 10 years and it’s what we will continue to do.
Ten years into Rude Health, we are clearer than ever that our ultimate purpose is to be part of the movement that encourages principled eating - what we call ‘eating right’. From a single muesli in 2006, to nearly 50 foods and drinks now, the biggest step towards our getting our purpose across this year was my co-founder Nick’s book, Eat Right. The book has given us the opportunity to celebrate all the foods and farmers that we can’t put on shelves: from natural wine, through sourdough bread to quality lard. It shows in full colour what we stand for and will continue to stand for, for the next 10 years - regardless of fads. Make mine a slice of sourdough toast, with organic butter and homemade jam, complete with gluten, dairy and sugar.