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Lisa

Gluten Free Labeling

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I was very upset by that article. The person who wrote it seems to think we have a labeling law in effect as of last September. :( I also found the article generally confusing.

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I was very upset by that article. The person who wrote it seems to think we have a labeling law in effect as of last September. :( I also found the article generally confusing.

Although somewhat non-specific (well okay, very non-specific), it does show how a variety of manufactures can be as uninformed as some of us as gluten free consumers, in purchasing products.

I will have to review it again. Not sure I picked up on the authors assumption that the FDA Laws were in place.

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It's in the "What Does Gluten Free Mean?" section.

"According to the FDA, as of September 2011, gluten-free labeled products should (a) not include ingredients from gluten or gluten derivatives and (B ) maintain a status of less than 20ppm of gluten for all gluten-free labeled products."

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It's in the "What Does Gluten Free Mean?" section.

"According to the FDA, as of September 2011, gluten-free labeled products should (a) not include ingredients from gluten or gluten derivatives and (B ) maintain a status of less than 20ppm of gluten for all gluten-free labeled products."

Yes, I noticed that the Proposed was omitted, in my review.

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I'm not sure she understands how the proposed laws will work either.

"Example:

A barbecue sauce has gluten as an ingredient and states "gluten free*" on their product label. At the bottom of the label the product states: "*tested below 20ppm for gluten." Though the end product might test as non-detectable, the product still contains gluten and should not be labeled gluten free."

This would be legally labeled gluten-free under the proposed laws. It would be nice if such a food could not be labeled gluten-free but that's what we'll be dealing with if the 20 ppm proposal passes. Some people on the board can even tolerate foods like this. Rice Dream is an example.

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I prefer to read "no gluten ingredients", rather than "gluten free". I find it more informative.

It tells me I need to weight my options, rather than just automatically grab it off the shelf. B)

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Personally, I love the GFCO mark. Nothing like independent certification to make me feel safe! :) After Tricia Thompson's study where she found all that gluten in soy flour I'm a little scared of "no gluten ingredients".

Unfortunately I'm not sure "naturally gluten-free" or "no gluten ingredients" was even legal under that old FDA proposal. Making it illegal to test and label anything but oats scares me half to death. I willingly pay extra for some of the Bob's Red Mill products like gluten-free xanthan gum and gluten-free cornstarch that have been tested and made in their dedicated facility.

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Sorry, Lisa, I have to disagree.

When I read it the first time, I didn't get past the part where she claims we have an actual law that went into effect in Sept. Even if it had been passed in Sept - which it was not- they would have to give companies a chance to implement it (change box labelling, etc). I don't know anything about her but I don't think she is very reliable. It is possible its a typo but, a reputable "expert" would have caught it when she re-read.

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Personally, I love the GFCO mark.

YES! The ultimate, at this time.

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Sorry, Lisa, I have to disagree.

When I read it the first time, I didn't get past the part where she claims we have an actual law that went into effect in Sept. Even if it had been passed in Sept - which it was not- they would have to give companies a chance to implement it (change box labelling, etc). I don't know anything about her but I don't think she is very reliable. It is possible its a typo but, a reputable "expert" would have caught it when she re-read.

There is nothing to disagree with. I know nothing of her credibility, but rather I found interesting the scenarios of possibilities, with unregulated "gluten free" criteria by producers or manufacturers.

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iI'm afraid I read the article and just went, "Huh??" :blink:

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iI'm afraid I read the article and just went, "Huh??" :blink:

Well then, pay it no mind. ;)

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Well then, pay it no mind. ;)

That's eggsactly what I'm doing. :P

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Canadian resident sticking his oar in the water. B)

There is a legal definition of gluten-free here. It (intentionally) does not address the possibility of contamination. But no product containing any ingredient derived from wheat, rye, barley or oats may be labeled or represented as "gluten-free."

An incremental improvement is coming shortly, when rye and barley will be added to the "priority allergens" that must be disclosed. Canada already includes sesame seeds and sulfites beyond the FDA/FALCPA list. Mustard seed is also being added.

The nature of cross-contamination is such that there can never be an iron-clad guarantee. Contamination can occur at any point along the supply line, not just at the final assembly plant. Even if the plant is ostensibly gluten-free, a person entering may carry crumbs into it. Not just employees enter--the UPS guy who brought that package came from the McDonalds drive-thru, eating a Big Mac. :o

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That is exactly the reason why I tend to ignore the subject (read, puts her head in the sand). It helps to have a gluten free label because it means someone is aware of the issue and is trying. You will find varying degrees of opinion on practically every product as to whether or not they have succeeded (in doing what, I am not quite sure :P ) So it all really comes down to trusting your own judgment. I frequently buy products that are not labelled gluten free after studying the ingredients. I have never had any problems with them. I have had problems with Amy's. Others have problems with Rice Dream....

Excuse me while I put my head back in the sand :blink:

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I finally finished the article. Melanie Weir the author is part of my Celiac Support Group and I go to her store frequently. She is really nice and is quite knowledgeable but I admit this article was confusing and tooooo long. All I know is that I will continue on being careful real labled call mfg's and if I have any question come back here and ask, you people are great.

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Personally, I love the GFCO mark. Nothing like independent certification to make me feel safe! :) After Tricia Thompson's study where she found all that gluten in soy flour I'm a little scared of "no gluten ingredients".

Unfortunately I'm not sure "naturally gluten-free" or "no gluten ingredients" was even legal under that old FDA proposal. Making it illegal to test and label anything but oats scares me half to death. I willingly pay extra for some of the Bob's Red Mill products like gluten-free xanthan gum and gluten-free cornstarch that have been tested and made in their dedicated facility.

Just so you know, Bob's Red Mill doesn't make the cornstarch they sell, nor the baking powder in which it is also included. I've never asked them about their xanthan gum, but I suspect they don't make that either.

What I'd like to see is the actual batch test results, printed on each package. This is not a big deal to implement at all, and it wouldn't be a burden to manufacturers. They already put dates and batch/lot numbers, so their systems are capable of batch-specific info being printed on the packages. It's just a matter of disclosure, which many companies do not want to do. Just as they don't want to label GMOs, because they feel it will "scare" consumers away.

Such batch-specific info would help identify particular facilities with and without CC issues, and when the company switches an ingredient source to one with a notably higher or lower level of CC. Yes, this would turn off those of us who need to be more careful (which we'll do anyway, but currently only after getting glutened and subsequently posting about it on the forum for the whole world to see), but it would also reward companies who manage things better. Again, they simply don't want to tell the consumer, hence all the runaround, doublespeak, and legalese when asked or when a law requires any such statements.

It's about as bad as the fact that companies are allowed to withhold ingredients entirely, such as in the case of the filling in Oreo cookies, or certain cola drinks. They call it a "secret formula".

And it would really be fantastic if grain producers would use dedicated equipment and facilities for each grain. This would not only be great for the gluten-free consumer, but for anyone with allergies to one grain but not another, be it a gluten grain or not. For example, someone with a corn allergy who can eat wheat, or a wheat allergy but can eat barley, and so forth.

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It's about as bad as the fact that companies are allowed to withhold ingredients entirely, such as in the case of the filling in Oreo cookies, or certain cola drinks. They call it a "secret formula".

Not true! Every ingredient in packaged food must be accounted for in the ingredient list. There are some vague terms permitted, such as "natural flavor," but wheat cannot be hidden in any of them.

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Just so you know, Bob's Red Mill doesn't make the cornstarch they sell, nor the baking powder in which it is also included. I've never asked them about their xanthan gum, but I suspect they don't make that either.

Fooey. Their website is a little deceptive then. "All of our products marked with our gluten free symbol are produced in a dedicated facility and batch tested for gluten content."

I guess it would be common sense that they aren't making some of that stuff. Duh. I sure hope they're testing. <_< Otherwise I'm wasting money.

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Or just read the part where it says:

"Though many companies try to follow the FDA's current gluten-free recommendation, mistakes are often made. "

as it clearly refers to it as "FDA's current gluten-free recommendation."

Take care,

Scott

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Not true! Every ingredient in packaged food must be accounted for in the ingredient list. There are some vague terms permitted, such as "natural flavor," but wheat cannot be hidden in any of them.

Sorry, my bad. It's not called a secret formula, it's called a Trade Secret, and it IS permitted. Perhaps the top 8 allergens have to be declared, but the FDA does allow companies to withhold ingredients from product labels in certain cases.

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/06188/704045-28.stm

https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Coca-Cola_formula

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Fooey. Their website is a little deceptive then. "All of our products marked with our gluten free symbol are produced in a dedicated facility and batch tested for gluten content."

I guess it would be common sense that they aren't making some of that stuff. Duh. I sure hope they're testing. <_< Otherwise I'm wasting money.

Well, the cornstarch and baking powder might be produced in a dedicated facility, and batch tested. Just not Bob's facilities, though I'd guess they repackage it in a dedicated gluten-free facility, and therefor subsequently test it.

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Sorry, my bad. It's not called a secret formula, it's called a Trade Secret, and it IS permitted. Perhaps the top 8 allergens have to be declared, but the FDA does allow companies to withhold ingredients from product labels in certain cases.

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/06188/704045-28.stm

https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Coca-Cola_formula

The ingredients are not "withheld." They are listed as "flavor." The exact makeup of the flavor is what is trade-secret. But there are limits on what can be labeled as "flavor."

Neither of those sites is provided by the FDA.

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