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Blount Fine Foods of Fall River, MA is recalling a single date code of Blount Fine Foods branded Rip Roarin’ Crab Soup in 16 ounce retail cup pack size because of undeclared milk, wheat and crab allergens. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to milk, wheat or crab run the risk of suffering serious or life-threatening reactions if they consume this product.

Product:
Blount Fine Foods branded Rip Roarin’ Crab Soup 16oz retail cup
Product Code: 71116             Lot Number: 1202117D              Use or Freeze By: 2/10/2012

The Rip Roarin’ Crab Soup back label incorrectly identifies the product as Manhattan Clam Chowder and the ingredient statement does not declare the allergens-milk, wheat or crab.

The lot code and sell by date are printed in black ink on the bottom of the cup.

No other products or date codes are affected by this recall.

The product was distributed to select Whole Foods Retail stores on the Eastern Coast of the United States

No illnesses have been reported to date.

Consumers who have purchased item listed above with affected lot number are urged to return it to the place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers who have health-related concerns should contact their physician. Consumers with questions may contact the Blount Fine Foods at 1-800-274-2526, Monday – Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Eastern Time. Additional information is available at www.blountfinefoods.com.

Source:
Enhorabuena!, Bayamón, PR is issuing this alert due to undeclared milk, wheat, tree nuts, and eggs in the product “Palitos de Guayaba” (Guava Sticks) . People who have allergies to milk, wheat, tree nuts and eggs run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reactions if they consume the products.

The product was distributed in PR retail stores during December 2011. The product is packaged in 7 oz bags, 11 oz cans and 10 units packs.

No illnesses have been reported to date in connection with this problem.

As a corrective action, the product is being re-labeled with new ingredient listings and citing allergens.

Consumers with any question may contact the company at 787-797-3918 or at info@enhorabuenainc.com
Source:
Shamrock Foods, a Phoenix, Ariz., establishment, is recalling approximately 7,500 pounds of marinated beef and marinated chicken products because the marinated beef product contains soybeans, wheat, and sulfites, and the marinated chicken product contains wheat, milk and sulfites, known allergens that are not declared on the label for either product.

The products subject to recall include:
  • Cases containing 2 10-lb. packages per case of “CHICKEN, BREAST DOUBLE LOBE MARINATED RANDOMS.” These products have an identifying item number of “2844671.”
  • Cases containing 2 10-lb packages per case of “BEEF CHUCK, SHOULDER CLOD 1/2” SLICED MARINATED USDA PRIME.” These products have an identifying item number of “3096311.”
The recalled products were produced from Dec. 1, 2011 through Dec. 29, 2011, and shipped to food service institutions in Arizona.

The problem was discovered by FSIS during a routine inspection. FSIS and the company have received no reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of these products. Anyone concerned about a reaction should contact a healthcare provider.

FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers of the recall and that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers.

Consumers and members of the media with questions about the recall should contact Sandy Kelly, Senior Director of Marketing and Communications, Shamrock Foods, at (602) 477-2401 or via e-mail at Sandy_Kelly@shamrockfoods.com.

Source:
Sirocco Enterprises, Inc, Jefferson, LA is recalling its 33.8 fluid ounce (1 Liter) bottles of Pat O’Brien’s Bloody Mary Cocktail Mix because it contains undeclared soy and wheat. People who have allergies to soy and wheat run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume these products.

Bottles of the recalled Pat O’Brien’s Bloody Mary Cocktail Mix were distributed nationally in retail stores and through internet purveyors.

No illnesses have been reported to date in connection with this problem.

The recall was initiated after it was discovered that the Pat O’Brien’s Bloody Mary Cocktail Mix was distributed in packaging that did not reveal the presence of soy and wheat. Subsequent investigation indicates the problem was caused by a change in an ingredient.

Production and distribution of the product has been suspended until FDA and the company are certain that the problem has been corrected.

Consumers who have purchased 33.8 fluid ounce (1 Liter) bottles of Pat O’Brien’s Bloody Mary Cocktail Mix are urged to return them to the place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers with any questions may contact the company at 1-504-834-1549 during the hours of 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM, CST.

Source:

Popcorn Palace of Schiller Park, IL, is issuing this statement to alert people with allergies to Peanuts, Tree Nuts, Milk, Soy, and Wheat that some of our 1-Gallon Value Bags contain the undeclared ingredients.  Bags were shipped with the ingredient and allergen information not applied directly to the immediate container and important allergen information may not have reached the end consumer.

People with one of these allergies run a risk of serious or potential life threatening allergic reactions if they consume these products:
  • Cheddar Cheese, 1-Gallon Value Bag (contains milk, soy)
  • White Cheddar, 1-Gallon Value Bag (contains milk, soy)
  • Chicago Style, 1-Gallon Value Bag (contains milk, soy)
  • Gourmet Caramel, 1-Gallon Value Bag (contains milk, soy)
  • Rainbow, 1-Gallon Value Bag (contains soy)
  • Caramel Nut, 1-Gallon Value Bag (contains milk, soy, peanuts, tree nuts (almonds, cashews))
  • Chocolate Drizzle Caramel, 1-Gallon Value Bag (contains milk, soy)
  • Macadamia Butter Crunch, 1-Gallon Value Bag (contains milk, soy, macadamia nuts)
  • Cookies & Cream, 1-Gallon Value Bag (contains milk, soy, wheat)
  • Spicy Cheese, 1-Gallon Value Bag (contains milk, soy, wheat)
  • No illnesses have been reported in connection with these products.
These products are completely safe for anyone without allergies to consume.

Affected products would have been purchased after October 1st, 2011 through one of our fundraising programs.

This notice was initiated after it was discovered that shipments did not include the ingredient and allergen information.  This issue has been corrected with updated packaging that includes nutrition facts, ingredients, and allergens applied directly to every item.

Consumers who have questions or would like additional information can call 1-800-873-2676.

Source:
Velvet Creme Popcorn Co. of Westwood, Kansas, is issuing this statement to alert people with allergies to Milk, Soy and Wheat that several of our products contain the undeclared ingredients. These people run a risk of serious or potential life threatening allergic reaction if they consume the following products:
  • Velvet Crème Peanut Brittle,  4 oz. cellophane bags (contains milk)
  • Velvet Crème Tail Gate Crunch,  1 lb. and 8 oz. cellophane bags (contains soy and wheat)
  • Velvet Crème Sweet Cajun Heat, 1 lb. and 8 oz. cellophane bags (contains soy and wheat)
These products do not have any lot codes.   Affected products would have been purchased before December 13, 2011, in our retail store in Westwood, Kansas.
 
These products are completely safe for anyone without allergies to consume.

No illnesses have been reported in connection with these products.

The recall was initiated after it was discovered the products had undeclared ingredients of milk, soy and wheat.  Subsequent investigation indicates the problem was caused by a temporary breakdown in the company’s production and packaging process and has now been corrected.

Consumers who would like to return the products can do so at the retail store in Westwood, Kansas, Monday thru Saturday 9:00 am to 5:30 pm. Consumers with questions may contact the company at 1-888-553-6708 during the hours of 9:00 am and 5:30 pm.

Source:
ImmusanT, Inc. announced today it has raised $20 million in Series A financing from Vatera Healthcare Partners LLC to advance development of the biotechnology company's immunotherapeutic vaccine Nexvax2®, companion diagnostic and monitoring tool for celiac disease. The proceeds will fund the Nexvax2 therapeutic and diagnostic development plan to the point of demonstrating proof-of-concept. ImmusanT expects to initiate the next clinical trial in early 2012.

"ImmusanT's Nexvax2 and companion diagnostic address the rapidly growing number of patients diagnosed with celiac disease whose only option is a strict diet that eliminates gluten. At Vatera we seek to invest in therapies that fulfill unmet medical needs and offer a significant clinical benefit to patients. We believe that ImmusanT's technology has the potential to dramatically improve the quality of life for celiac disease patients," said Sundar Kodiyalam, Managing Director of Vatera Holdings LLC.

ImmusanT's product pipeline includes Nexvax2, which combines three proprietary peptides that elicit an immune response in patients with celiac disease who carry the immune recognition gene HLA-DQ2, which includes approximately 80% of patients. ImmusanT Scientific Founder and Chief Scientific Officer Dr. Bob Anderson discovered the three peptides responsible for making gluten toxic to people with the disease. Nexvax2 is designed to tolerize celiac disease patients to the toxic effects of gluten, enabling them to return to a normal diet. Safety, tolerability and bioactivity of Nexvax2 have been established in a Phase 1 clinical study and presented at this year's Digestive Disease Week.

ImmusanT is also developing a proprietary whole-blood functional T-cell test for use both as a standalone diagnostic for celiac disease and as a monitoring tool for the therapeutic. In the company's dual-track product development strategy, clinical trial subjects will be screened using the diagnostic along with standard serology tests to identify patients most likely to respond to Nexvax2.

"There is tremendous enthusiasm for Nexvax2 from celiac patients and clinicians who want a therapy that allows patients to resume a normal diet and return to good health and improved quality of life. The financial backing and support of Vatera Healthcare Partners will allow us to round out our team and advance our research and development programs to bear out this hypothesis," said Leslie J. Williams, Founder, President and CEO of ImmusanT, Inc.

About Celiac Disease and Nexvax2
Celiac disease is an inherited autoimmune disorder that is triggered by foods containing gluten, the main protein in wheat, rye and barley, affecting the digestive process of the small intestine.  Nexvax2 is delivered intradermally in small doses to reprogram and tolerize the disease-causing T-cells triggered by the patient's immune response to gluten. The approach is similar to treatments for allergies to cats, ragweed or dust mites, whereby repeated doses establish non-responsiveness to a specific antigen, and in the case of celiac disease, reduces or eliminates the body's rejection of dietary gluten. With no available drug therapy, the only option for the 1% of the global population that has celiac disease is a gluten-free diet, which is fraught with compliance issues and inadvertent exposure leaving patients at risk for long-term intestinal damage. By reprogramming the T-cell response, the Nexvax2 approach is designed to reduce inflammation in the villi that line the small intestine and are responsible for absorbing nutrients. This returns the intestine to a normal healthy state.

About Vatera Healthcare Partners LLC
Vatera Healthcare Partners LLC is a venture capital firm established by Michael Jaharis, Founder of Kos Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a specialty pharmaceutical company sold to Abbott Laboratories in 2006, and of Key Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a specialty pharmaceutical company that merged with Schering-Plough in 1986. Vatera focuses on investing in biopharmaceutical firms and products with the goal of building and growing companies by leveraging the team's collective experience and expertise in the pharmaceutical industry and strong network of relationships within industry and academia.

About ImmusanT, Inc.
ImmusanT is a privately-held biotechnology company focused on restoring tolerance to gluten in celiac disease by harnessing new discoveries in immunology that improve diagnosis and treatment and return patients to a normal diet, good health and improved quality of life. The company is developing Nexvax2®, a therapeutic vaccine for celiac disease, and a companion diagnostic and monitoring tool to improve celiac disease management. ImmusanT's targeted immunotherapy discovery platform can be applied to a variety of epitope-specific autoimmune diseases. More information can be found at www.ImmusanT.com.
Avaxia Biologics, Inc., a privately-held biotech company developing oral antibody drugs that act locally within the gastrointestinal tract, announced today that the company was awarded U.S. Patent 8,071,101, "Antibody Therapy for Treatment of Diseases Associated With Gluten Intolerance."

This patent, which expires on May 27, 2029, provides broad coverage for treating celiac disease using orally administered antibodies produced by the Company's proprietary platform technology.  This newly issued patent includes claims covering the composition of matter for Avaxia's AVX-176 antibody, currently in development for celiac disease.

"We are pleased to receive this new patent," stated Barbara Fox, PhD, CEO of Avaxia Biologics.  "This is an important milestone for our company as it is our first issued patent and it validates that the company can obtain composition of matter claims for products derived from our antibody technology platform.  We are actively building a strong IP portfolio with additional patent applications that will cover the broad range of disease applications the company has created with its oral antibody technology."

Dr. Fox added, "This first patent covers AVX-176, an orally administered antibody designed to bind to gluten, the dietary protein that provokes celiac disease in susceptible patients.  We are currently conducting an NIH supported program to advance the development of AVX-176 into pre-clinical models of celiac disease.  Preliminary in vitro data are encouraging and we hope to be able to develop a product in the near future."
About celiac disease: Celiac disease is an inherited, autoimmune disease in which the lining of the small intestine is damaged from eating gluten and other proteins found in wheat, barley, rye, and possibly oats.  Celiac disease is also known as celiac sprue, nontropical sprue, and gluten-sensitive enteropathy.  The disease can develop at any point in life, from infancy to late adulthood.  The symptoms of celiac disease can vary significantly from person to person with the most common being abdominal bloating and pain, chronic diarrhea, vomiting, constipation and weight loss.  There is no medication available to treat the disease.  Patients must follow a lifelong gluten-free diet in an attempt to avoid symptoms.  More than 2 million people in the United States have the disease, or about 1 in 133 people.

About Avaxia Biologics, Inc.: Avaxia Biologics is a development-stage company developing oral antibody therapeutics that act locally within the gastrointestinal tract. The antibodies are designed to treat both diseases of the GI tract and metabolic diseases. Using its proprietary antibody platform, Avaxia is developing products for inflammatory bowel disease, GI acute radiation syndrome, celiac disease, oral mucositis, diabetes and obesity.
 
 Silva Sausage Co., a Gilroy, Calif. establishment, is recalling approximately 2,290 pounds of a chorizo sausage product because of misbranding and an undeclared allergen, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today. The product contains wheat, a known allergen, which is not noted on the label.

The products subject to recall include:
[View Label]:

5-lb. vacuum packs of “NETO’S MEXICAN CHORIZO 4/1.”

The product subject to recall bears the establishment number “6086” inside the USDA mark of inspection and can be further identified by the item number “18062” and lot codes “11279,” “11293,” “11304,” “11321,” “11333,” or “11341.” The product was produced between Oct. 1, 2011, and Dec. 9, 2011, and distributed for institutional use in Santa Clara, Calif.

FSIS discovered the problem during a label review at the establishment. The review revealed that cereal, which contained wheat, was used in the product and was inadvertently left off the product labels. FSIS and the company have received no reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of these products. Anyone concerned about a reaction should contact a healthcare provider.

FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers of the recall and that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers.

Consumers and media with questions about the recall should contact the company’s vice president, Rick Martins, at (408) 293-5437.

Consumers with food safety questions can "Ask Karen," the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours a day at www.AskKaren.gov. The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from l0 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day.

Source:
Yes, it is the holiday season, and back online for 2011 are the Controllable Christmas Lights for Celiac Disease:
http://www.komar.org/cgi-bin/christmas_webcam

Once again, three live webcams and X10 technology allows web surfers to not only view the action, but also *control* 20,000+ lights ... plus inflate/deflate the giant 15' Santa Balloon, Santa on Skis, in a Helicopter, and flying a Plane ... along with Elmo, Frosty Family, SpongeBob SquarePants, and Homer Simpson Santa - D'OH!

Alek's Controllable Christmas Lights for Celiac Disease are onlThe website is totally free (and totally fun) and is one of my zany ways of raising awareness & soliciting donations for Celiac Disease - http://www.celiaccenter.org/news_xmas.asp - my two sons have this condition, so it's personal for me. If folks are so inclined, you can make an optional donation directly to the University of Maryland Center for Celiac Research. Over $60,000 has been raised with ... holiday lights - pretty wild.

While people around the world (146 countries last year) enjoy seeing the lights ON, environmentalists will be happy to know that they can turn the lights OFF with a click of the mouse. Better yet, this is the 7th year I'm using Wind Power and even though that is "clean" energy, I even did a Carbon Offset contribution for the half Ton of CO2 generated by the about one MegaWatt-Hour of power consumed - that's about the same as *one* cross-country airline trip. Finally, by providing online viewing via webcam, you don't need to burn fossil fuels by driving around to see Christmas lights ... Al Gore would be proud!

But HEY, the couple of bucks a day in electrical costs are well worth the joy it brings to people (especially the kids) when they see the display in person and/or on the web. There's even a Hi-Def option, so gather your family around the large screen and open up some Eggnog as the chestnuts are roasting on an open fire.


So surf on by, tell your friends, Blog/Facebook/Tweet about it and spread the word.
Merry Christmas and HO-HO-HO!
alek

P.S. In my last broadcast Email, I mentioned how my Cataract surgery had gone well and I've acquired a new "superpower." Since then, I got "tested" with a Monochromator at HP Labs which confirmed my ability to see Ultraviolet light. It's an interesting oddity and you can see some visual examples and read more at:
http://www.komar.org/faq/colorado-cataract-surgery-crystalens/ultra-violet-color-glow/
So while I could dress up as "Captain UV", it might be pretty scary to see me in purple cape and tights ...

PPS. I do "mail-all's" to my address book a few times a year, but if for any reason you'd rather not get these updates, please just let me know.
Silva Sausage Co., a Gilroy, Calif. establishment, is recalling approximately 1,010 pounds of British style banger sausages because of misbranding and an undeclared allergen, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today. The products contain wheat, a known allergen, which is not noted on the label.

The products subject to recall include: [View Label (PDF Only)]
10-lb. cases of "Silva Sausage English Brand Bangers"

The products bear the establishment number "EST. 6086" inside the USDA mark of inspection. The cases can further be identified by the item number "10362" and lot codes "112271," "112911," or "112980." The products were distributed for institutional use in Livermore and Sacramento, Calif.

FSIS discovered the problem during a label review at the establishment, and it is believed that wheat was left off of the label when the company changed its in-house label printing program. FSIS and the company have received no reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of these products. Anyone concerned about a reaction should contact a healthcare provider.

FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers of the recall and that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers.

Consumers and media with questions about the recall should contact the company's vice president, Rick Martins, at (408) 293-5437.

Consumers with food safety questions can "Ask Karen," the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours a day at AskKaren.gov. The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from l0 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day.

Source:
Caribbean Rum Balls of St. Thomas, VI, is issuing this alert due to undeclared allergens, specifically: wheat, coconut, milk, eggs and sodium bisulfite (preservative). People who have allergies to any of these ingredients run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume these products.

The “Rum Balls" were distributed locally in retail stores and through mail orders.

The product comes in 4, 8 and 12 ounce, white packages with the Caribbean Rum Balls name and logo.

No illnesses have been reported to date in connection with this problem.

The alert was initiated after it was discovered that the allergen-containing products were distributed in packaging that did not reveal the presence of allergens. Subsequent investigation indicates the problem was caused by a temporary breakdown in the company's production and packaging processes.

All products are being re-labeled with new ingredient listings, including sub-ingredients and citing allergens.

Consumers with questions may contact the company at 1-340-775-6616.
Source:

Boston.comBoston.com
November 17, 2011

Boston.com's Cassandra Bent interviewed Scott Adams regarding the future direction of the gluten-free food market, and current and future trends in celiac disease and gluten sensitivity diagnosis. From the article: "Today, Adams says, doctors are testing more patients and patients are asking to be tested more because of the vast amount of information and media coverage of the disease."

Le Mars, Iowa – Wells Enterprises, Inc., in cooperation with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is voluntarily recalling a limited number of packages of its Blue Bunny® Personals® ice cream 5.5 fl oz. because it was mis-packaged and contains undeclared wheat. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to wheat and/or have gluten sensitivities may be at risk from consuming these products.

On a limited number of packages, the lid describes the product as Blue Bunny Super Chunky Cookie Dough ice cream, and the carton portion of the package describes the product as Blue Bunny Peanut Butter Panic ice cream. The product inside the carton is Super Chunky Cookie Dough. The ingredient statement on the carton does not declare wheat, which is an ingredient in the Super Chunky Cookie Dough product.

The affected mis-packaged product was distributed in 5.5 fl oz. Personals cartons, with Lot Number 10009 “Best Used By” date 10/1/2012, - UPC 0 70640 00463. The lot number and UPC can be found printed on the side of the carton.

The affected product was shipped to the following states: Kansas, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Iowa, Oklahoma, Nebraska, North Dakota, Tennessee, Florida, Wisconsin, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Massachusetts, and Texas.

Wells Enterprises, Inc. became aware of the packaging error after receiving a report from a store that the lid and cup were for different products.

The allergy alert and recall relates only to the above mentioned mis-packaged Blue Bunny ice cream. No other Blue Bunny ice cream products are affected.

No adverse reactions have been reported to date.

Consumers who have purchased the recalled products should return them to the store where they were purchased for a full refund. Anyone requiring more information should contact Wells consumer affairs at 1-800-331-0830 between the hours of 8am and 5pm CST Monday-Friday

Source:
Chef’s Requested Foods, Inc., an Oklahoma City, Okla., establishment is recalling approximately 875 pounds of center cut steaks because the packages actually contain turkey filets. The turkey filets contain the allergens wheat and soy, and the center cut steak labels do not list wheat as an ingredient, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.

The product subject to recall includes:
10-oz. plastic double cup packages of “Chef’s Requested CENTER CUT STEAK Hand Trimmed, Bacon Wrapped Beef Steaks Enhanced with up to twenty percent of a lightly seasoned solution”

The products subject to recall bear the establishment number “EST. 5792” inside the USDA mark of inspection on the package label and “Use or Freeze by 11/12/11” inkjetted on the side of the package. The products were produced on Oct. 6, 2011, and were shipped to retail establishments in Arizona, California, Maryland, Ohio, and Texas.

The issue was discovered by a retail establishment who notified Chef’s Requested Foods, Inc., who in turn notified FSIS. The problem occurred when a company employee used labels from items produced earlier on the same day in similar packaging. FSIS and the company have received no reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of these products. Anyone concerned about a reaction should contact a healthcare provider.

FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers of the recall and to ensure that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers.

Consumers with questions about the recall should contact the company’s Compliance Manager, Keith Anyong, at (405) 239-2610. Media with questions about the recall should contact the company’s Media Contact, Bill Wells, at (405) 239-2524.

Source:

Almost 2 months of GF and here are some highlights.  I’m finding it hard to tell if being GF is helping.  I had a sinus infection when I began my GF diet, and now have had one for almost 3 weeks (thought it was a migraine for the first week).  I believe my body is reacting to the nasty antibiotics and my mind is more focused on fighting off the discomfort than appreciating any benefits GF might be providing.  Unfortunately, I can’t separate the discomfort from fibromyalgia, sinuses/migraines, and reactions to medicine to pin point the culprit of my pain.  I move forward believing that GF is not hurting me, so it is worth continuing.

I have my fiancé’s support and have been educating him.  He was so excited when last week he found a whole section of GF products in a local grocery store.  He had ventured out on his own to purchase some GF pasta to make for our dinner.  Needless to say, he came home with several bags full of items that we both have tried and enjoy, some better than others.  He even had me stop later and buy more of some of the snack items for HIM!

When I first started this, he had gone to the store to purchase items for dinner.  He called me to give me the lowdown on what all he’d bought.  Most items were perfect – GF soups, pasta, fresh meat, frozen vegetables.  But, there was one exception, he had bought frozen broccoli with cheese sauce.  He could not imagine cheese (dairy) and broccoli (vegetable) having gluten.  After I insisted several times that these were not GF, he finally read the label.  To his dismay, his bubble burst.  We would not be having broccoli in cheese sauce for dinner after all.  He now reads labels when making food purchases at the store. 

I’m finding that when I don’t have my meals planned or when I’m in a hurry and don’t have time to stop home, I still head for fast food restaurants.  I know what few items I can have at the various places and try my best to stick to that list.  I take food with me to work to avoid having to scavenger hunt for something to purchase. 

When the option is to eat at a sit-down restaurant, I am pleased to find that many chain restaurants (Olive Garden, Chili’s, steakhouses, just to name a few I’ve tried) have GF menus.  I ask for a GF menu when we are being seated and explain to the waiter/waitress immediately upon ordering that I am allergic to wheat and to please inform the chef.  I use the term chef, never cook, as I don’t want to insult the person preparing my food.  Sometimes, the message is not always conveyed to all preparers of my food.  I have had salads show up with croutons (after specifically requesting no croutons), bread placed in front of me while we wait for our meal (but my fiancé gets to enjoy that), and fries at a restaurant that stated on their GF menu to exclude them.  I had a manager bring out a new burger (both times without the bun as requested) without the fries for me and apologize profusely over the mishap and the time it took to cook the fresh burger.  I was grateful that they didn’t just remove the fries and bring the same burger and plate back to me.

Although I get tired of saying “I can’t eat that”, I’m adapting.  What I wasn’t initially prepared for was the “it’s only a little bit of…” (bread crumbs, or whatever).  I now turn the tables back on the person who says it by asking, “if someone had a peanut allergy, would you tell them to eat just one little peanut?”  It took me awhile to come up with something that a typical person could understand.  I’ve also run into someone offering me organic bread thinking that it’s so healthy it hasn’t to be okay for me to eat.

So, the learning continues and so does the eating. ..GF eating that is.

PROLAB NUTRITION INC. (PROLAB) is recalling some of its protein items that may contain undeclared milk, wheat and gluten allergens. People with an allergy or severe sensitivity to milk and/or wheat and gluten allergens may run the risk of a serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume products containing these allergens. For this reason, below is a list of the protein products that PROLAB is proactively recalling, although no illnesses or discomfort has been reported to date:

PROLAB initiated this recall immediately following the discovery that the packaging label of some distributed protein items did not reveal the presence of milk and/or wheat and gluten allergens in the products. PROLAB’s product manufacturer, Nature’s Products, Inc. (NPI), informed PROLAB that the raw material NPI used to manufacture the abovementioned products were not properly labeled.

Contains Undeclared MILK and WHEAT/GLUTEN
PROLAB® Pure Whey, Milk Chocolate, 5 lb. (V3)     750902201929
PROLAB® Pure Whey, Vanilla Créme, 2 lb. (V3)     750902201875
PROLAB® Pure Whey, Wild Strawberry, 5 lb. (V3)     750902201936
PROLAB® Pure Whey, Wild Strawberry, 2 lb. (V3)     750902101557
       
Contains Undeclared WHEAT/GLUTEN      
PROLAB® Advanced Pure Whey Protein, Milk Chocolate, 2 lb. (V3)     750902201301
PROLAB® Advanced Pure Whey Protein, Vanilla Créme, 2 lb. (V3)     750902201349
PROLAB® Advanced Pure Whey Protein, Wild Strawberry, 2 lb. (V3)     750902201271
PROLAB® Pure Whey, Milk Chocolate, 2 lb. (V3)
PROLAB® Pure Whey, Milk Chocolate, 16 g Sample Packet     750902201882
PROLAB® Pure Whey, Vanilla Créme, 5 lb. (V3)
PROLAB® Pure Whey, Vanilla Créme, 16 g Sample Packet     750902201912
PROLAB® Pure Whey, Wild Strawberry, 16 g Sample Packet      
PROLAB® Whey Isolate Protein, Milk Chocolate, 2 lb. (V3)     750902201851
PROLAB® Whey Isolate Protein, Vanilla Créme, 2 lb. (V3)     750902201813
PROLAB® Whey Isolate Protein, Wild Strawberry, 2 lb. (V3)     750902201837

According to Jenia Khudagulyan, Chief Operating Officer for PROLAB’s parent company, "PROLAB values consumers and their health, and it is the company’s goal to accurately convey what its products contain in order to ensure that consumers’ health is protected at the highest possible level. We discovered that some PROLAB protein items were not properly labeled for milk and/or wheat and gluten allergen content, and we immediately took precautionary measures by proactively recalling the affected products which will be re-released at a later date with corrected labels.

The affected products listed in this press release were distributed internationally -- by retail stores, mail order, and direct delivery -- in the following states, provinces, and countries: Alabama; California; Connecticut; Florida; Georgia; Idaho; Illinois; Indiana; Iowa; Kansas; Maryland; Massachusetts; Michigan; Minnesota; Missouri; Montana; Nevada; New Hampshire; New Jersey; New Mexico; New York; North Carolina; Ohio; Oklahoma; Pennsylvania; South Dakota; Tennessee; Texas; Utah; Vermont; Virginia; Washington; West Virginia; Wyoming; Ontario, Canada; Australia; Malaysia; and Russia.

Consumers who have purchased these items and wish to return them may do so -- used or un-used -- to the place of purchase for a full refund. For more information or any questions regarding PROLAB products, interested persons may contact the parent company (Natrol) by emailing customer-service@natrol.com or by calling the U.S. toll-free consumer relations line at 1-800-262-8765 from 5:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Pacific Standard Time.

Source:
M & P Food Productions, LTD. of Brooklyn, NY is recalling several varieties of Vareniki/Dumplings because it was discovered that the products contain undeclared Milk and Wheat, therefore posing a potential health hazard. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to these allergens run the risk of illness or serious or potentially fatal allergic reaction if they consume these products.

The ingredients statement of the products did not declare the presence of milk or wheat. As a result, we are recalling all of the products listed below with "BEST BEFORE SEP 19 2011" through "BEST BEFORE MAR 19 2012" from the market:
  •     Bapehuku Dupling brand Vareniki cabbage, NET WT. 14 oz., UPC 7 07163 02619 8;
  •     Bapehuku Dupling brand Vareniki potato & onion, NET WT. 14 oz., UPC 7 0 7163 02616 7;
  •     Bapehuku Dupling brand Vareniki potato & mushroom, NET WT. 14 oz., UPC 7 07163 02617 4;
  •     Bapehuku Dupling brand Vareniki farmer cheese, NET WT. 14 oz., UPC 7 0716 302618 1;
  •     Bapehuku Dupling brand Vareniki sour cherry, NET WT. 14 oz., UPC 7 07163 02615 0.
The products were distributed to retail stores in New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Florida, New Jersey, North Carolina, and South Carolina.

All products are packed by weight (14 oz.) and are distributed frozen in sealed plastic bags. Labeling is printed directly onto the individual bags. Vareniki Cabbage packages have a yellow and green background with green and black lettering. Vareniki Potato & Onion packages have a yellow and brown background with brown and black lettering. Vareniki Potato & Mushroom packages have a yellow and blue background with blue and black lettering. Vareniki Farmer Cheese packages have a yellow and purple background with purple and black lettering. Vareniki Sour Cherry packages have a yellow and red background with red and black lettering.

No illnesses related to the recalled products have been reported to date.

The recall was initiated as a result of a labeling problem discovered during a USDA inspection which was confirmed by the FDA during a follow-up visit to the manufacturer.

Consumers who have purchased any of the above listed products are urged to return it (them) to the place of purchase for a refund. Consumers with questions may contact the company at (718) 438-6421 Monday - Friday 9 am - 4 pm ET.

Source:
http://www.fda.gov/Safety/Recalls/ucm273294.htm

How it all started

Overwhelmed. ..anxious. ..excited…and a gamut of other emotions are what I felt that day.  Did I hear this new doctor right?  He left the exam room stating “wait here, I think I have something that might help you.”

I was out-of-town for a week when I started with sinus problems on the second day there.  I was in a familiar town, had a former doctor there, but chose to visit a walk-in clinic hoping to be in and out of there quickly.  I knew that going to my former doctor meant possibly waiting days to get in for a visit or waiting a long time in a waiting room, then an exam room.  That may have been the best decision I’ve made.  I had waited 3 days since the congestion began and my ears were still clogged.  I knew I had a sinus infection and prayed that I could get put on an antibiotic, as based on past experience, if I didn’t, it was going to get unbearable and require a stronger antibiotic than I wanted to take.

I went to a walk-in clinic shortly after they opened for the day.  There was only one other patient there.  So far, so good.  When the doctor walked into the exam room, he was an older man.  Yes, my prayers were being answered…short wait (important because I had a 10 month old with me) and from past experience, younger doctors tend to not want to prescribe antibiotics, but I knew what I needed.  After reviewing my medical history with me...fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, IBS, migraines, depression, abdominal pain (blamed on ovarian cysts)…he examined me and determined I did have a sinus infection.  That’s when he said, “I’ll be right back.  I might have something to help you.”  Of course, I’m imagining he’s gone to get me a neti pot and my stomach turns.

He comes back with copies of something from the internet.  My curiosity is piqued.  He explains that he has started giving information to patients that come to him with a history similar to mine.  It’s information about celiac disease.  I listen to what he has to say while I remind myself that I was tested for that about six years prior and it was negative.  Hence, the diagnosis of IBS. He asks me to contact him in about 3 weeks to see how I’ve done with it (note to self, contact doctor!).  Wow, a doctor that knows I live out of state and he wants to know how I’m doing after I try this?  I leave with a prescription for an antibiotic, a recommendation of an OTC sinus and cold medicine, and wondering if this doctor might have the answer for my other symptoms.

Loving to read, I buy the book he recommends (The Gluten Connection) and wait anxiously for it arrive.  I started googling gluten-free and celiac disease.  I realize that I needed to immediately change what I eat.  The information is shouting out at me:  you have these symptoms, nothing else has worked, it can’t hurt to try it.  Okay, it can hurt the food budget, but if I can function better and feel better, it will be worth it.

My next blog will describe what I’ve experienced in the past month since starting to eat gluten-free.

This just in from Frances Kelley, Austin Chair, GIG of Central and South Texas, via the Celiac Listserv:
Many of the members of GIG of Central and South Texas have talked about the Jenny’s Bakehouse products.  Some of you have mentioned how much you enjoyed them.  Others have talked about getting sick after consuming the product.  Because of the number of people who claimed to have gotten ill after eating the products we sent samples of the Kaiser Buns and Dinner Rolls to GIG’s national office for testing.

GIG tested the products in house and sent the products to an outside lab for further testing.  Both products tested positive for gluten using r-5 and G12 Elisa testing methods in the test performed by GIG and the test performed by the lab.  The lab test showed that both products tested as having gluten in excess of 10,000 ppm (parts per million).  Keep in mind that the FDA proposed definition for labeling a product gluten free is that the product tests to less than 20 ppm. 

Based on this information, GIG of Central and South Texas strongly recommends that you do NOT consume these products.

For questions, please contact GIG at 253-833-6655 ext 104.
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