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Do Not Trust The Trader Joes Labels


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73 replies to this topic

#31 Happy Holly

 
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Posted 01 February 2009 - 05:02 PM

I think I read about this in the paper. I hope your son is okay.
Did Dino Chicken Nuggets and Corndogs remove the gluten free labels?

Regarding the 200 ppm topic...

When I contacted Willshire Farms about the gluten in their dino chicken nuggets and corndogs, they told me that when they batch tested the level of gluten in their products never exceeded the USDA limit, which is 200 ppm. When their food was tasted by an outside lab, some of their products tested upwards of 1000 ppm, which I assume is due to their shared lines.


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#32 MaryJones2

 
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Posted 01 February 2009 - 05:21 PM

Regarding the 200 ppm topic...

When I contacted Willshire Farms about the gluten in their dino chicken nuggets and corndogs, they told me that when they batch tested the level of gluten in their products never exceeded the USDA limit, which is 200 ppm. When their food was tasted by an outside lab, some of their products tested upwards of 1000 ppm, which I assume is due to their shared lines.



Jenny, I think Wellshire Farms gave you bad information. The USDA currently has no policy defining gluten-free in the US. The FDA is recommending the definition be set at 20ppm but that isn't official yet. Either way Wellshire Farms fare exceeds anything acceptable for us and it's quite frustrating!
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#33 JennyC

 
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Posted 01 February 2009 - 06:18 PM

Jenny, I think Wellshire Farms gave you bad information. The USDA currently has no policy defining gluten-free in the US. The FDA is recommending the definition be set at 20ppm but that isn't official yet. Either way Wellshire Farms fare exceeds anything acceptable for us and it's quite frustrating!


They may have given me inaccurate information. I have not had a chance to check with the USDA directly. I was also told by Wellshire that they had not produced those chicken nuggets since June 2008 and they are moving facilities. They will still produce their product on shared lines, but they are attempting to meet the proposed FDA definition of gluten free.
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Jenny

Son 6 yrs old, Positive blood work, Outstanding dietary response, no biopsy.
Household mostly gluten free since 3/07

Me: HLA-DQ 02 & 0302 (DQ 08), which I ran & analyzed myself!Currently gluten lite, negative tTG, asymptomatic

#34 Lisa16

 
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Posted 03 February 2009 - 10:18 AM

Here is what I know about Trader Joe's. They have a champaign-citrus vinegar and it is on their gluten free list (available in the store.) It does not say gluten free on the bottle, but it lists "natural flavors" in the ingredients. The rest of the ingredients are okay.

I took a chance.

I got zapped. Mild, but I did get zapped.

That is enough for me, all arguments aside. No more Trader Joe's. It made me sick. Simple.
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#35 Nancym

 
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Posted 03 February 2009 - 11:32 AM

At this point, without any real regulations on what gluten-free means, you need to do due diligence. I think Trader Joe's has done pretty well with the comments on the back of products stating whether or not there might be issues with products on the same equipment. What that means to you, as a consumer, you'll have to figure out for yourself. Right now, I pretty much restrict myself to things that contain no gluten ingredients and seem to be doing ok. But if you're really sensitive then you might need to go a step or two further.
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#36 wschmucks

 
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Posted 06 February 2009 - 04:27 PM

Maybe then they should have a label that reads "gluten free....to some". Lol.

I think they should switch to no gluten ingredients (that would be more accurate and cuase me to read back of box right away). Yes-- we should all double check the box for ourselves. I know they are TRYING to help-- but they can potenitally be harmful to not call more attention to the fact that the products are made on the same line, when they call so much attention to the gluten free labeling.

I know they meant no harm-- but i think it is important that we ask for a strict code when using the term gluten free.
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#37 majicbunnies

 
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Posted 16 March 2009 - 02:04 PM

I almost purchased some baked cheetos at Trader Joes today. The front of the package had the mark indicating it was gluten free. The back, however, indicated that the product had been processed on equipment that also processed wheat products.

I have sent an e-mail to Trader Joes but have not yet heard back from them.

Please be very careful and do not trust their gluten free label on the front of their products.


If you look at the legend for their labeling marks, you will see that their 'gluten free' mark is not described as labeling something gluten free. It simply says: 'contains no gluten ingredients'. This way, they can slap that label on without risking anything from consumers if their product contains gluten from CC, since the ingredients themselves are considered gluten free.
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Scream thy last scream!

#38 SusanBurroughs

 
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Posted 17 March 2009 - 06:08 PM

My email to TJ's, who trivializes a serious condition for profit:

I am disappointed and very upset that one of the retailers I had come to trust for my special diet needs is blatantly misleading and making people sick. Your Gluten labeling is completely misleading. While appropriate for those choosing a gluten-free life style, it misinforms and poisons those of us who have no choice. Your practice is unconscionable, insincere, and dangerous. I will no longer shop at your store, and may gluten-free online social communities are spreading the word about your lazy attempt to capitalize on a very serious disease.
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#39 SusanBurroughs

 
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Posted 17 March 2009 - 06:09 PM

Here is what I know about Trader Joe's. They have a champaign-citrus vinegar and it is on their gluten free list (available in the store.) It does not say gluten free on the bottle, but it lists "natural flavors" in the ingredients. The rest of the ingredients are okay.

I took a chance.

I got zapped. Mild, but I did get zapped.

That is enough for me, all arguments aside. No more Trader Joe's. It made me sick. Simple.


ME TOOOOOOO!!!!
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#40 afreeclimber74

 
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Posted 28 February 2010 - 06:14 PM

Trader Joe's list of "no gluten ingredients used" foods is bogus and no help at all to sensitive groups.

I became extremely ill after eating gluten contaminated food three days in a row. I thought it was safe because it was on the list and I read the ingredients. What I didn't see was the "made on shared equipment" warning that was on the side of the container out of sight of the ingredients list.

Also, why is it that the WHO and Euro standard for gluten-free foods is 0 PPM, but here in the US it's proposed to be as much as 20 PPM? I can't believe the FDA is willing to approve a term like "free" that includes any amount of the contaminant that is supposed to be absent.
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#41 psawyer

 
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Posted 28 February 2010 - 07:09 PM

Also, why is it that the WHO and Euro standard for gluten-free foods is 0 PPM, but here in the US it's proposed to be as much as 20 PPM? I can't believe the FDA is willing to approve a term like "free" that includes any amount of the contaminant that is supposed to be absent.

Actually, the European Codex standard is 20 ppm or 200 ppm, depending on the type of product.

Zero is an ideal, but can not be enforced because there is no test that is that sensitive. The most sensitive (and expensive) tests can only detect 5 ppm. Tests that are economically feasible for food production are limited to a sensitivity of 20 ppm.

As a side question, do you allow anybody to bring food that contains gluten into your home? If you do, your home is a "shared facility." If they use any of your plates or utensils, then you have "shared equipment."
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Peter
Diagnosis by biopsy of practically non-existent villi; gluten-free since July 2000.
Type 1 (autoimmune) diabetes diagnosed in March 1986
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#42 lovegrov

 
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Posted 01 March 2010 - 07:16 AM

As Peter said, the limit is most definitely not zero. In fact, Europe allows Codex low-gluten wheat starch, which most people on this list would probably never even touch.

richard
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#43 Lynayah

 
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Posted 05 March 2010 - 04:52 PM

Here is a concern I have:

Some with Celiac are not very symptomatic -- some who have tested positive have no symptoms at all.

So, is it possible that they can eat foods that are produced on shared lines and never feel it, yet they are being glutened to the point where it might cause damage?

I am one of the "lucky" ones. I am non-Celiac gluten-intolerant and VERY, VERY sensitive, so I know right away if something that's labeled as "no gluten ingredients" or "naturally gluten-free food" is not right for me (usually within 15 minutes).

But what about those who have Celiac who don't react the way I do? And what about those who are not under the care of a really good doctor? They may be eating their lives away without knowing it.

I pray that labeling laws in the United States will change. It is so important.
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Gluten Intolerant with double HLA-DQ6. Pre-diagnosis: Weight gain, swelling, diarrhea, mouth sores, back pain, body aches, fatigue, muscle weakness, BRAIN FOG, runny nose, recurrent sinus infections, bruising, low white cell count (whole life), and more. My feet were so bad, I could hardly walk. Toward the end: Chronic Vit. D deficiency (almost no D in my body despite a quality multi-vit. each day).

There is hope! Gluten-free since Sept. '09, and I have my life back - I feel better than in many, many years!

Favorite quotation: "You must do the thing you think you cannot do." - Eleanor Roosevelt

#44 veggiemomma

 
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Posted 08 March 2010 - 11:05 AM

A very interesting topic.
I was at Trader Joe's today purchasing a few Gluten Free packaged items.
I noticed the gluten-free label and the disclaimer on the back that said it was processed on shared equipment. I'm a little overwhelmed as to how to proceed. My reaction
to gluten has been more subtle and I don't want to unknowingly continue to damage my body by comsuming gluten. What to do? I thought I'd found a good thing with Trader Joe's products.
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Diagnosed Celiac From Positive Bloodwork 2010
Diagnosed Hashimoto's Disease 2002

#45 modiddly16

 
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Posted 09 March 2010 - 08:19 AM

A very interesting topic.
I was at Trader Joe's today purchasing a few Gluten Free packaged items.
I noticed the gluten-free label and the disclaimer on the back that said it was processed on shared equipment. I'm a little overwhelmed as to how to proceed. My reaction
to gluten has been more subtle and I don't want to unknowingly continue to damage my body by comsuming gluten. What to do? I thought I'd found a good thing with Trader Joe's products.



It depends on your reaction to this. A product can be gluten free and processed on shared equipment. I wouldn't be overwhelmed about this or frustrated with Trader Joe's. They're a good company who actually work pretty hard to make things possible for people with celiac disease and it bothers me that people are so quick to accuse them of wrongdoing. Most shared equipment is washed and sterilized in between using it for different products. Does that remove 100% of the risk of your getting slightly cross contaminated? NO. But I'm not sure that you're going to be "consuming" gluten in any amount that will damage you. You're not eating something that has gluten in it, they're just saying that its on a shared facility and the possibility is there that there is a slight contamination. The choice is yours. I eat things processed on shared equipment if I trust the company.
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