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Rather than just lurk as I normally do, thought I would share the experience I had last night. I was in my new favorite health food store and was checking out. I had put a package of Asian Gourmet rice crisps on the counter. The VERY KNOWLEDGEABLE checkout person picked them up and studied them. They were labeled gluten free so I did not read the ingredients (didn't think I'd have to). Then she told me that there was wheat in them from the soy sauce they used. She told me she had even called the company to ask how they could be labeled gluten-free when they contained wheat. They told her that they had gotten permission from someone to use that label even though there was wheat in the product. She was very helpful and said I probably should not get them. She didn't understand it either. How can they legally do this? Is it because the amount is miniscule? No matter how much, they are still not gluten FREE!

On the positive side, I was so impressed that this person had the knowledge and concern to tell me about this and to check the label for me. For anyone who may live in the area, the store was the Sahara Mart in Bloomington, Indiana.

:rolleyes:

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Wow that is ridiculous....why would they even want to have it labeled gluten free when its not? Shows how much they care about the consumers. <_< At least the lady was helpful and saved you from being glutened :D

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Hi, you lurking person, you! I got a dose of gluten during my initial "learning what I can and cannot eat" months. We had in the house at that time some miniature bottles of Tabasco sauce, my most beloved of sauces. I had gotten them for my son to take to school with him in his lunch box. I looked at that teeny, weeny label and it said that it was made with vinegar. My joy was great as I realised that it wouldn't be necessary to give up this old favorite. I put the bottle away, and next time I went to the store, purchased a big bottle for everyone to use. So not long after, we sat down to dinner and the sauce was on the table. I sprinkled some on my food, took a bite with just one drop of sauce and almost immediately started cramping and bloating. I was flabbergasted and picked up the big bottle and looked at the ingredients. DISTILLED vinegar was on the list. What I think happened was that the tiny, little bottles had not enough room to include the word, "distilled", so they left it out and simply put "vinegar."

It doesn't seem like that should be legal, since in the U.S, where this product is made, a "vinegar" designation means that it is from an apple cider source. Anyway, it took me three days in bed before I got over that one. It was a flukey sequence of events, but it's just one more example of our need to always read the labels.

Paula

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Paula-

You might want to check out some of the newer literature and articles on vinegar. The only vinegars that are not safe are basically malt and the apple cider FLAVORED vinegars. I believe those are the only ones. I am sure someone can correct me if I missed any.

-Jessica :rolleyes:

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Thanks, Jessica. I wasn't aware that my information was dated; my kingdom for a link! Actually, it seems to me that I had a conversation with someone at CSA about distilled vinegar. They said that it is supposedly distilled to the point of "safety"...safety being maybe several parts per million. But who's to say if that will cause a reaction. All I know is that I won't eat Tabasco again. The company that produces it will not make any guarantees about it being gluten free, and from my body's response, I can see why.

Paula

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Guest Viola

I found a granola type bar labeled gluten free and read the ingredients. The first one was oats. I spoke to the clerk and she went over and crossed the gluten free off the box label and put a sign up. Then she phoned the company. I couldn't wait until she got an answer from the company, but will be dropping back into the store on Wed. I can't remember the name of the bar, but will write it down on Wed. and post back. The problem is with bars ... we adults might think to check the label, but young children would just see the gluten free and buy it and eat it. :(

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Hi Shirley! Please do post again; it should be interesting to hear what the company has to say about that. I thought about another one that I ran across at our local health food store several months ago. In their zeal to capitalize on the demand for gluten-free foods, they put up signs here and there designating supposedly gluten-free foods. One such item was a hot cereal made by Arrowhead Mills, called Rice and Shine. The cover said something about gluten; I didn't srutinize because it was in the gluten free section. When I got it home, I noticed that the box actually said, "Made with gluten-free ingredients" and had an asterisk of microscopic proportions next to this statement. In very small letters elsewhere on the box it explained that the consumer could call them in regards to this claim. I called, and they said that it was made on the same equipment that they used to process gluten containing products and that they cleaned between batches. I was told that it could be eaten at my own risk as they were not prepared to guarantee its safety. So they wanted to cash in on the gluten-free status without wanting to ensure that the cereal was safe. They were rather snippy with me when I pointed this out. I will not purchase anything from this company, now. So I took the cereal back to the health food store, explained the situation, and next week there it was in the same place with the big gluten-free sign. The store owners too, sadly, are ready to jump on the financial gluten-free wagon, but are not too terribly interested in actually educating themselves as to the needs of Celiacs so that they can offer us truly safe foods. For instance, they have bulk bins of gluten-free foods right underneath leaking bags of wheat flour which gets all over the lids of the bins. When I mentioned it, they made some apologetic and concerned noises, and the next time I went, there were even more bags that were put there, I was told, by someone else. They are in business to serve people with special dietary needs, but don't really care about the very people that keep them afloat. So I stopped going there and set out to find my provisions elsewhere and have had very good luck with the help of some extremely nice store managers. It's nice to know that not everyone is an opportunist.

Paula

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Guest Viola

One of my biggest beefs with most stores, is that they put the gluten free cake mixes in with the regular mixes, in the flour (baking) section of course. Now, I'm a big girl and can wash my hands and wipe down the boxes as soon as I get them, but if a child is helping mom or dad shop, they will happily skip down to the gluten free cake mix, (which is likely covered in flour dust), put it in the buggy and then get their little hands up around their mouth. I've managed to convince one store to keep it all separate, and that's the one we shope at.

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Arrowhead Mills is pretty well known for their stance on this one. They're "Made from Gluten-Free Ingredients" label... gotta love it. (But don't consider it small - most labels are smaller. You'll get used to looking for ALL the text, no matter how small, on labels. ;-) )

But be aware that most things that say gluten-free MAY WELL BE produced on lines that are cleaned after something with gluten is run. Production lines are expensive, so they're shared. There are standards for cleanliness, of course, but all of those products are eaten at your own risk - and, unfortunately, that's most of them.

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Hi Tiffany. Yeah, I know that whatever we eat, is at our own risk. Heck, you could say that about life in general; it's at our own risk. But it just gripes me when some company is ready to make a buck off of our need for safe food without wanting to stand behind their product. Like, I understand, for instance, that Frito-Lay uses common lines to produce a variety of things, and that the lines are cleaned between batches, but they give you a much more solid assurance that our chances of getting sick from contamination are quite slim. They don't try to attract Celiacs with any flashy labeling making claims about being gluten-free, but they will provide a gluten-free list on request. I think that that is a fair commitment to the needs of the Celiac community, and I feel comfortable eating their foods. By contrast, Arrowhead Mills goes out of their way to label their products in a manner that is, in my opinion, deceptive, and then if asked about the gluten-free status, wash their hands of any responsibility. That's what I'm talking about.

Shirley, our local Wal-Mart has boxes of Hogsden Mills gluten-free soy flour pushed up right next to High gluten wheat flour! And we've probably all seen that kind of thing everywhere! We need education at so many levels.

Paula

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Guest Viola

I stopped at the store that carried the granola type bars that were labeled gluten free yesterday. The bars are a Canadian product called Wild Country. The Organic Almond Nougat Bar is gluten free as are two or three others, however there are two that are not. The company has responded very well and have repackaged the two that are not! Way to go Wild Country! They not only repackaged them, but have changed the colour of the packaging of the ones that are not gluten free so they can be told apart at a quick glance :D Nice to see that this company has responded so well, and so quickly!

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Guest nini

I've run into several instances where a product was labeled Gluten Free and then right in the ingredients there was very clearly listed a gluten ingredient. One was Oskri's sesame bars... they have since eliminated all gluten from their products but I don't trust them. Another one was one of those companies that puts out energy bars, they sent out a huge display that said Low Carb AND gluten free and labeled all of their bars gluten free, but alas, on the ingredients once more GLUTEN! I pointed this out to the store manager and they promptly pulled the display down and contacted the company, the reps response was, most of the bars are gluten free except for certain flavors, but there had been an error in the marketing dept with labeling, but they sent them out anyway. Another company I don't trust. Wish I could remember the name of it... I'll do a search and see if I can

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Guest nini

OK, it was the Think Thin energy bars. According to the company, some are in fact gluten free, but some are not, read ingredients. I still don't trust this company after the error and nonchalance from the marketing dept.

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