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  • Jefferson Adams
    Jefferson Adams

    Cheerios Sales Rise After Switch To Gluten-Free

    Reviewed and edited by a celiac disease expert.

    Caption: General Mills' move to gluten-free Cheerios is paying off. Photo: Wikimedia Commons--General Mills

    Celiac.com 01/21/2016 - With sales of non-gluten-free cereals enduring a slow, consistent downward slide in just about every category, gluten-free cereals have been one of the few bright spots for cereal manufacturers.

    Wikimedia Commons--General MillsIn an effort to combat those falling cereal sales across its existing product line, manufacturer General Mills released five gluten-free Cheerios products.

    Initial results suggest that their plan is working, at least somewhat. According to General Mills, sales of non-discounted, full-price gluten-free varieties of Cheerios grew 3% to 4% last quarter, offering the fist improvement after multiple quarters of declining sales.

    This is particularly good news for General Mills, as it follows on the heels of an embarrassing recall of 1.8 million boxes of Cheerios and Honey Nut Cheerios in October, shortly after the introduction of their gluten-free varieties. The company chalked that issue up to "human error."

    So the fact that the latest numbers are strong so soon after a major product recall suggests that gluten-free Cheerios might just be the ticket for turning around their slumping sales.

    What do you think? Have you tried gluten-free Cheerios? Will you? Are you happy that major companies like General Mills are making gluten-free products available?

    Read more: buzzfeed.com


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    Please know that these products are not certified gluten free. It is only gluten removed, therefore people with celiac disease should not eat these products. When I asked them they did not know if they would ever certify due to cost.

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    Please know that these products are not certified gluten free. It is only gluten removed, therefore people with celiac disease should not eat these products. When I asked them they did not know if they would ever certify due to cost.

    You are incorrect--they are gluten-free and safe for celiacs, or they could not be labeled "gluten-free." Certified gluten-free is also no guarantee that an item could not be contaminated, and some certified products have tested over 20 ppm for gluten.

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    Oats themselves are not clearly non-toxic to celiacs. I wrote to GM about my concern re: gluten-free Cheerios because the only thing they did to make them gluten free was to source oats that weren't cross-contaminated. But there is a litany of evidence indicating oats can be toxic to celiacs, yet no company I have ever seen push "gluten free" oats has addressed this controversy. The almighty dollar wins again.

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    Specific to the Cherrios, yes they are gluten removed and yes they are tested. It appears the batch testing is somewhat less than thorough and there are others trying to get he mfg to do more consistent testing to address this for the celiac community. Hopefully they will improve the process in the coming months

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    They are gluten REMOVED and not grown in a designated field with designated equipment and facilities. Ask your medical specialist but until certified this celiac family says NO! General Mills already has a few lawsuits pending due to false advertising.

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    You are incorrect--they are gluten-free and safe for celiacs, or they could not be labeled "gluten-free." Certified gluten-free is also no guarantee that an item could not be contaminated, and some certified products have tested over 20 ppm for gluten.

    I do not know if I can agree with "could not be labeled gluten-free" and my reasoning is this, I am seeing more and more products that say "gluten free" on one side of the product only to have "processed/produced in a facility that also processes/produces wheat and gluten products". Cereals, rice, pasta and other similar products that I will not take the risk to eat. Are those products gluten-free or is the risk of contamination higher? Are the manufacturers covering their assets? Or simply this, how can they be gluten-free and still have potential for the presence of wheat and gluten?

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    I absolutely love the gluten-free Cheerios!! I have missed them terribly since being diagnosed with celiac 4 years ago. I would like to thank General Mills for their time , investment, persistence, and interest in expanding their product for those that must modify their diet due to gluten issues.

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    My son became very ill after eating so-called "gluten -free" Cheerios. I would never recommend them for ANYONE with celiac disease. Maybe they have "fixed" the problem but I'll never buy them again. I'll stick with Chex. Both are General Mills products. You'd think they could have done better with the Cheerios brand.

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    I was diagnosed with celiac disease in 2001 and have been very strict with my gluten free diet since then. One time that I mistakenly ended up eating gluten, I was sick for 10 days. Since the Cheerios have gone gluten free, I have tried Multi-Grain Cheerios, Frosted Cheerios, and Apple Cinnamon Cheerios. I have had no adverse reactions to any of them. I am SO glad to see more and more products becoming gluten free. I am willing to be patient with companies (and restaurants) as they strive to do a progressively better job of preventing cross contamination.

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  • About Me

    Jefferson Adams is Celiac.com's senior writer and Digital Content Director. He earned his B.A. and M.F.A. at Arizona State University, and has authored more than 2,000 articles on celiac disease. His coursework includes studies in science, scientific methodology, biology, anatomy, medicine, logic, and advanced research. He previously served as SF Health News Examiner for Examiner.com, and devised health and medical content for Sharecare.com. Jefferson has spoken about celiac disease to the media, including an appearance on the KQED radio show Forum, and is the editor of the book "Cereal Killers" by Scott Adams and Ron Hoggan, Ed.D.

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