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Omission Handcrafted Lager Beer is Real Beer for Real Gluten-Free Beer Lovers

During college I spent a year and a half living and studying in Tuebingen, Germany. This was before my diagnosis with celiac disease, and it was there that I really learned to know and love beer. After my diagnosis, and around the time I founded this Web site, I spent around two years trying to perfect a gluten-free beer made of sorghum and rice malts. I got close, but it never tasted quite right.

Omission Handcrafted Lager BeerThe same can be said of many of the gluten-free beers that are made without using barley, which, according to Germany's 1516 "Reinheitgebot," or German Beer Purity Law, can't even be called "beer" in Germany.

Omission Handcrafted Lager Beer, on the other hand, can be called real beer in Germany, as it is made using only traditional beer ingredients: malted barely, hops, yeast and water. How could it be safe for celiacs you ask? Because it is made using a process that removes the harmful gluten to below 10 ppm, and each batch is tested using an independent lab (utilizing the R5 Competitive ELISA test).

So now, thanks to Omission Beer, I can once again enjoy the flavor of a real German-style beer. This wonderful lager beer stands on its own against any other great lager beer, and even those who are not gluten-free wouldn't notice that it was "different."

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5 Responses:

Peter Olins
Rating: ratingfullratingemptyratingemptyratingemptyratingempty Unrated
said this on
22 Oct 2012 6:13:25 PM PDT
Scott, I am not familiar with worldwide regulations, but for the US, I recommend that you read the May 24, 2012 ruling by the TTB (Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau) regarding gluten-free labeling. It prohibits the use of the term "gluten-free" on any beer derived from barley malt, even if it has been crafted to remove gluten.

"....One of the following qualifying statements must also appear legibly and conspicuously on the label or in the advertisement as part of the above statement: “Product fermented from grains containing gluten and [processed or treated or crafted] to remove gluten.
The gluten content of this product cannot be verified, and this product may contain gluten....”

Regarding the R5 Mendez Competitive Assay for gluten, this has not been approved by the FDA:

"....Because the current tests used to measure the gluten content of fermented products have not been scientifically validated, such statements may not include any reference to the level of gluten in the product..."

[I would post a link to the regulation, but this is not permitted by Details can be found by searching for: "Interim Policy on Gluten Content Statements in the Labeling and Advertising of Wines, Distilled Spirits, and Malt Beverages"].

It is exciting that breweries are working on innovative approaches to remove gluten from barley-based beer, and the work looks very promising, but I agree with the TTB that it is premature to declare these as "gluten-free". I look forward to future research into valid methods for determining both "gluten" levels and the safety of complex protein mixtures.

Peter Olins, PhD

( Author)
said this on
30 Oct 2012 9:03:05 AM PDT
Your comments speak to labeling laws for alcoholic beverages--which Omission Beer is conforming to. Their beer does not say "gluten-free" on the label, even though it is.

( Author)
said this on
30 Oct 2012 9:07:03 AM PDT
Your comments speak to labeling laws for alcoholic beverages--which Omission Beer is conforming to. Their beer does not say "gluten-free" on the label, even though it is.

Rating: ratingfullratingemptyratingemptyratingemptyratingempty Unrated
said this on
09 Nov 2012 11:23:22 AM PDT

Peter is right. Currently the science shows that it is premature to call Omission gluten free. Recent studies even suggest that it is not, and their current test underestimates gluten content in hydrolyzed products.

( Author)
said this on
09 Nov 2012 3:01:55 PM PDT
The Sandwich R5 ELISA has been shown to underestimate gluten content, but they are not using that test. They are using the Competitive R5 ELISA, which was specifically designed to test for hydrolyzed gluten.

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