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Julysailor

Wal-mart Brand Canned Vegies

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Some of the canned vegetables, Good Value Brand, have a statement on them, "Naturally Gluten-free Food".

Is this just a play on words so that gluten testing is not required, i.e. gluten is not a naturally occuring part of this food.

This tells you nothing about possibilities of cc.

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I'm not sure what is going on with WalMart and its Great Value products. It was so nice when many of their products had the words "gluten free" on them. Now, however, the past few weeks I have noticed that the labels have been changed on virtually all of them. Now the statement says, "May contain wheat". I have found this on virtually everything from canned and frozen corn, potato chips, etc. I have yet to find a Great Value product that says gluten-free on it now. This may be a CYA statement, but is very frustrating! :angry:

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Labels must not be misleading. To label something as simply "gluten-free" that must be a differentiating factor from other similar foods. Since all potatoes are gluten-free, you can not label and sell "gluten-free potatoes." You can, however, say that potatoes are naturally gluten-free (i.e. all potatoes are). You can also say something like, "These potatoes, like all potatoes, are gluten-free."

"Gluten free" refers only to intentionally added ingredients. It does not necessarily mean that any testing for cc has been done, nor that the facility does not also process products containing gluten. Some companies do restrict the gluten-free label to products tested and/or produced in a theoretically gluten-free facility, but that is voluntary.

Placing a "may contain," "shared facility," or "shared equipment" statement on the label is also completely voluntary. Just because you don't see it doesn't mean it is not the case. And when you do see them, consider the specific situation and your own sensitivity.

Because testing is expensive, few products are actually tested for gluten. Those that are cost more because of it.

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I understand all that, Peter. However, my gripe is that the Great Value labels have gone from gluten free to "may contain wheat, etc." On the canned and frozen products I have checked, it does not say "naturally gluten free" even. I often will try products that say "manufactured in a facility that also...." but will not consume those that say "may contain". Maybe it's the same thing, but I have stopped buying the products because of this change. :huh:

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Wal-mart may have gotten tired of celiacs who think they were glutened by a "gluten-free" product threatening them over it.

richard

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That's what I'm thinking, also.

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Placing a "may contain," "shared facility," or "shared equipment" statement on the label is also completely voluntary. Just because you don't see it doesn't mean it is not the case. And when you do see them, consider the specific situation and your own sensitivity.

Because testing is expensive, few products are actually tested for gluten. Those that are cost more because of it.

I thought that labeling food allergens was the law now. Under the Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act (FALCPA), food labels are required to state clearly whether the food contains a "major food allergen." The law identifies as a major food allergen any of eight allergenic foods: milk; eggs; fish such as bass, flounder, and cod; crustacean shellfish such as crab, lobster, and shrimp; tree nuts such as almonds, walnuts, and pecans; peanuts; wheat; and soybeans. The law also identifies as a major food allergen any ingredient that contains protein derived from any of these eight foods.

The plain language declaration requirement of FALCPA also applies to flavorings, colorings, and incidental additives that are or contain a major food allergen. -http://permanent.access.gpo.gov/lps1609/www.fda.gov/fdac/features/2006/206_foodlabels.html

But the thing is that the "Naturally Gluten-Free" banner on the front of the product is much more visible than the label on the Great Value can of Italian-style diced tomatoes my daughter bought and could have served to me if she didn't have such a sharp eye and read the label, where it said, "may contain traces of wheat." Why, oh why, would tomatoes need wheat in them? And why does Wal-Mart have to be so misleading and get my hopes up, just to be let down when I read the label. Am I wrong? I just want to be able to go to the store and find something that I can eat and trust it won't make me sick. I don't think this is too much to ask. *sigh* This very thing ticked my daughter off so much she emailed WM corporate offices and let them have it.

And on top of that, the super Wal-Mart in my town is constantly removing items from their shelves that I trust, such as from Gluten-Free Pantry. Me and my family are considering not shopping at Wal-Mart any more, and going to Publix, where they have a much greater selection of products from well-known companies that make gluten-free products.

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Thanks for all the info, but my confidence in Great Value Products hasn't improved.

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My daughter heard back from Wal-Mart. Here's their response:

Thank you for your contacting us regarding our Great Value Italian Diced Tomatoes. We recognize the importance of labeling gluten-free products appropriately and apologize for the confusion caused when a secondary allergen warning is placed on a product labeled "gluten-free." It has come to our attention that a small number of Great Value products contain both a gluten-free label and a statement indicating that the product "may contain traces of wheat."

>

> While the products contain no gluten or gluten derivatives as part of the ingredient list, they are processed in plants where products containing wheat are also processed. Although the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) allows a product to be labeled "gluten-free" if it contains less than 20 parts per million of prohibited grains, it is not our intention to confuse customers. To that end, we are reviewing labeling on all "naturally gluten free" products and will take appropriate remedial actions.

>

> The health and safety of our customers is paramount. Should you have any concern about a "gluten-free" item purchased at Walmart, please return it to your local store for a full refund.

>

> If you have any additional questions about the product you have purchased or if we can be of any further assistance, you may contact us by visiting www.walmartstores.com and clicking on the contact us link or by phone @ 1-877-505-2267. For future questions regarding product ingredients, nutritional facts, preparation instructions and more, click the grocery link at www.walmart.com .

>

> Sincerely,

>

> Jen Petrelli

> Great Value Customer Contact Team

>

>

>

> Maybe they will straighten their labeling problems out. Even if they do, I won't be buying their Great Value products. I've since began a food boycott of Wal-Mart and won't purchase food items there. I get my groceries from Publix now.

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