Celiac.com 08/17/2012 - In an effort to promote the production of safe, reliable gluten-free food products, the Canadian Government has announced a $245,000 grant that will help the Canadian Celiac Association partner with ExcelGrains Canada, the Packaging Association of Canada and the Canadian Health Food Association to develop specific controls and the supporting tools for each of their existing food safety systems.
The measure includes specific controls for gluten-free foods. The end result will be a group of gluten-free controls and guidelines that will help to eliminate the risk of gluten contamination in grains, packaging materials, and bakery products, across the entire product manufacturing chain.
The CCA's mission is to promote awareness of celiac disease and gluten intolerance, along with offering advice and information to manufacturers and distributors of gluten-free foods. ExcelGrains Canada is a farm food safety program for grain farmers managed by the Canada Grains Council.
Member of Parliament Ron Cannan of Kelowna-Lake Country is a strong supporter of the measure. He says that food safety is one of the government's priorities, and that the investment "will help provide consumers with the gluten-free foods they need and boost consumer confidence in Canadian food."
Thanking the government for passing the measure, Jim McCarthy, Executive Director of the CCA, noted how important it is for "government and industry to work together to ensure that foods labeled 'gluten-free' truly are safe for the consumers who need them."
He added that the measure will help the three million or so Canadians who suffer from celiac disease and gluten intolerance to more easily and safely access a 100% gluten-free diet.
The investment is part of the Canadian Integrated Food Safety Initiative, through which, the Canadian government helps organizations develop national, government-recognized on-farm and/or post-farm hazard analysis and critical control points (HACCP) or HACCP-based food safety systems.