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'gluten-Free' Labeling Rules Head To White House For Usa

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At long last! :)

 

The petition is still open for signatures if you haven't signed it yet.  The new rules are not approved yet, but have moved from the FDA to the next stage.

 

https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/finalize-standards-gluten-free-labeling/SsmdZh3C?utm_source=wh.gov&utm_medium=shorturl&utm_campaign=shorturl

 

An announcement of the rule being sent forward for review:

 

http://thehill.com/blogs/regwatch/healthcare/284929-gluten-free-labeling-rules-head-to-white-house

                   

'Gluten-free' labeling rules head to White House               
                                       
                        By Megan R. Wilson                                                                                -
                                                          
                        02/26/13 11:46 AM ET                    
                                    

New rules dictating what foods can be labeled “gluten free”
have arrived at the White House for final review, according to federal
records.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been
working on the labeling requirements for gluten-free foods since 2005.
The regulation has been named “economically significant,” meaning it has
a cost of $100 million or more on the economy.

On Monday, the rule headed to the White House’s Office of
Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), which it will need to pass
through before being enacted.

 

“Establishing a definition of the term 'gluten-free' and uniform
conditions for its use in the labeling of foods is necessary to ensure
that individuals with celiac disease are not misled and are provided
with truthful and accurate information with respect to foods so
labeled,” FDA said in a 2011 re-opening of the proposal.

               
    In the rule, the FDA defines a product as “gluten free” if it does not
contain the following: wheat, rye, barley, or any hybrid of these
grains; ingredients such as wheat flour that have not been processed to
remove gluten; or any item made up of more than 20 parts per million of
gluten.

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I was afraid of this.  It looks like they are going to go with the International Codex standards, and we are going to end up with imported "gluten free" foods made of codex wheat starch at 20ppm or less, theoretically, with it all being perfectly legal.  Are not these labels to be done on a voluntary basis by the manufacturers, so there is not going to be strict enforcement ?  This IS going to make people sick.  And they are going to call it an "improvement," to regress in this manner.  

 

Two things about the online petitions - one, it does not have the actual rule, just the plea to "finalize the rule, now."   This is like begging for a pig in a poke.   Secondly, the White House was annoyed with how many petitions they were getting, and having to address once they reached the required number of signatures threshold, so they moved the goal posts, and set a higher threshold of required signatures of of 100,000 people signing one,  before they will issue a response, now. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/01/16/white-house-petitions_n_2487541.html      So starting a new petition to ask that the American standard for labeling for gluten free require that any wheat, rye, barley sourced product note that it does contain it, even if it were made of codex wheat starch, it would have to say so, would now need a signing threshold 4 times as large to get a response. 

 

The rule also could potentially be ignoring the problem of GMO grains coming to the near future of mass human consumption, as it is not clear if the legal definition of a "hybrid grain" falls under the same category as a "genetically modified organism."  We all had better start thinking about this problem NOW and not later, because I see NO lobbyists, breeder-manufacturers, or advocates for GMO plant breeding-manufacturing-genetic manipulation willing to go on the record, and tell us just what types of grains they are planning to "modify" with other types of grains or their proteins, and crossing triticum family (wheat,rye,barley,spelt,etc) genes of gluten grains into our safe, gluten free ones, to give something like more drought tolerance, could be a disaster. 

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