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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   09/30/2015

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Change In Alexia Frozen Potato And Sweet Potato Products
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T.H.    404

Alexia brand frozen potato and sweet potato products (except for potato bites) had gluten free on the label and were made in a gluten-free facility up until now. Due to expansion, they are going to be made in a facility that also processes wheat (possibly also shared equipment. Their printed statement to their employees is somewhat vague on this, so the lovely gal I spoke to was having difficulty finding out information about the equipment line). They now say that they can no longer guarantee there won't be trace amounts of gluten cc.

New potato products made in this shared facility will no longer carry the gluten free label, however, so you can spot them that way. Per the Alexia rep, if a product still has 'gluten free' printed on it, it was made in the gluten free facility.

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kareng    1,992

Alexia brand frozen potato and sweet potato products (except for potato bites) had gluten free on the label and were made in a gluten-free facility up until now. Due to expansion, they are going to be made in a facility that also processes wheat (possibly also shared equipment. Their printed statement to their employees is somewhat vague on this, so the lovely gal I spoke to was having difficulty finding out information about the equipment line). They now say that they can no longer guarantee there won't be trace amounts of gluten cc.

New potato products made in this shared facility will no longer carry the gluten free label, however, so you can spot them that way. Per the Alexia rep, if a product still has 'gluten free' printed on it, it was made in the gluten free facility.

Isn't that a shame?

How did you find out? Just curious! The rest of us might have just gone along assuming they were still OK.

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lynnelise    109

I love those potatoes. :( Especially the sweet potato fries! What a letdown. You'd think more companies would be moving towards gluten-free instead of away from.

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I contacted them a few weeks ago and they told me the same thing - they were now gluten free, but moving to a cross contamination facility. I told them, on behalf of celiacs everywhere, to please rethink that, but, well, I guess they didn't listen. Stock the freezer before it's too late!

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celiac-mommy    79

Hmmmm. I haven't seen gluten-free on their bags in a long while. I regularly purchase the SP fries at Costco and just reevaluate the ingredients every time. I'll have to pay attention so see if the CYA statement shows up on the bag soon...

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Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I love those fries. But thank you so much for posting. I had a mystery glutening (which I wasn't sure if it was glutening or somethign else) a few weeks ago. I checked my open bag of fries from BJ's and they no longer say gluten-free. They were the only pre-made ones I had found that were gluten-free and without soybean oil. So sad. I guess I will just make my own from now on. :(

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T.H.    404

How did you find out?

My daughter has been having some trouble getting completely healthy. We've tracked down some allergies on our own, and some with testing, and that she's more sensitive to gluten than normal, but since it hasn't been enough, now I'm going through all the products she or my son can eat and calling them to make sure they are still safe. And finding stuff like this.

total bummer - they really liked these! :(

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Coleslawcat    6

Ore-Ida has sweet potato fries that are labeled gluten free. I just discovered them recently at Sam's Club. I just finished off the bag tonight and haven't reacted to them.

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cahill    189

Ore-Ida has sweet potato fries that are labeled gluten free. I just discovered them recently at Sam's Club. I just finished off the bag tonight and haven't reacted to them.

this is the ingredient list for ore-ida sweet potato fries from their web site

Ingredients List

SWEET POTATOES, CANOLA OIL MODIFIED FOOD STARCH, RICE FLOUR, TAPIOCA DEXTRIN, SEA SALT, LEAVENING (SODIUM ACID PYROPHOSPHATE, SODIUM BICARBONATE), XANTHAN GUM, ANNATTO (COLOR), DISODIUM SODIUM ACID PYROPHOSPHATE.

maybe it has the canola oil I reacted to but something got me , just like I had been glutened

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T.H.    404

this is the ingredient list for ore-ida sweet potato fries from their web site

Ingredients List

SWEET POTATOES, CANOLA OIL MODIFIED FOOD STARCH, RICE FLOUR, TAPIOCA DEXTRIN, SEA SALT, LEAVENING (SODIUM ACID PYROPHOSPHATE, SODIUM BICARBONATE), XANTHAN GUM, ANNATTO (COLOR), DISODIUM SODIUM ACID PYROPHOSPHATE.

maybe it has the canola oil I reacted to but something got me , just like I had been glutened

I guess the question would be:

-Does Ore-Ida have a gluten free line for their fries?

- Does Ore-Ida tests their products for gluten? If so, is it every batch, or routine testing?

If they don't test every batch, then it's always possible that you got a bad batch. And if they don't have a gluten free line, that increases the risk factors a little, as well.

If your reaction was gut related, you might want to look into the annatto or xanthan gum as a possibility, if you don't think it was gluten. Both of those have also been known to cause a lot of digestive distress in some people.

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modiddly16    48

I eat Ore-Ida all the time and Alexia and have never had a gluten reaction to them. Some people on here have issues with potatoes and also too much xanathan gum can cause a gluten reaction (in non gluten people too!) maybe something else got you?

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Gemini    785

I eat Ore-Ida all the time and Alexia and have never had a gluten reaction to them. Some people on here have issues with potatoes and also too much xanathan gum can cause a gluten reaction (in non gluten people too!) maybe something else got you?

I think you hit the nail on the head! People are too focused on gluten and xanthan gum can cause horrific reactions which mimic a gluten reaction 100%. It happened to me and was one of the worst reactions I ever had. You can't have a gluten reaction if there is little to no gluten in a product. Most of the time gums are present in gluten-free products and they can wreak havoc.

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I think you hit the nail on the head! People are too focused on gluten and xanthan gum can cause horrific reactions which mimic a gluten reaction 100%. It happened to me and was one of the worst reactions I ever had. You can't have a gluten reaction if there is little to no gluten in a product. Most of the time gums are present in gluten-free products and they can wreak havoc.

Just because YOU don't react to a "little gluten" please don't accuse people that do react to very small amounts of making things up. I have eaten these fries regualrly (about once every two weeks) for months with no trouble. Then all of the sudden I felt glutened and couldn't trace the source. I DID eat those fries that week. No ingredients have changed but the processing HAS changed. That was enough for me to conclude I got sick from these fries and I won't be eatign them again. I know it wasn't in my head. I eat other thigns with xanthan gum (like Udi's) and canola oil and pretty much all the other ingredients (potatoes, seasonings, etc) in those fries and I don't have a reaction. Again, please don't discount cc just because YOU don't have reactions to tiny amounts.

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love2travel    396

Just because YOU don't react to a "little gluten" please don't accuse people that do react to very small amounts of making things up. I have eaten these fries regualrly (about once every two weeks) for months with no trouble. Then all of the sudden I felt glutened and couldn't trace the source. I DID eat those fries that week. No ingredients have changed but the processing HAS changed. That was enough for me to conclude I got sick from these fries and I won't be eatign them again. I know it wasn't in my head. I eat other thigns with xanthan gum (like Udi's) and canola oil and pretty much all the other ingredients (potatoes, seasonings, etc) in those fries and I don't have a reaction. Again, please don't discount cc just because YOU don't have reactions to tiny amounts.

Thus far I have not been able to determine any links between eating any foods to GI troubles (aside from neuro things such as fog, etc. that does not seem to happen after any specific food - usually when I am very tired - my fibro also contributes to that). When I went on my gluten challenge for four months I did not feel sick at all (although I am more than aware of what goes on internally). Anyway, the reason for this explanation is that I cannot afford even a smidgen of CC because I do not feel sick from gluten (yet, anyway). So, I have no clue whether I have been glutened or not which is scary. My dietitian said I must be OTT diligent. I feel that one may not REACT to tiny amounts of gluten but just imagine what is going on inside and the problems it could cause later in life! As I am well armed with information I just could not knowingly do that to my body. I really want to live a long productive life! :)

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Gemini    785

Just because YOU don't react to a "little gluten" please don't accuse people that do react to very small amounts of making things up. I have eaten these fries regualrly (about once every two weeks) for months with no trouble. Then all of the sudden I felt glutened and couldn't trace the source. I DID eat those fries that week. No ingredients have changed but the processing HAS changed. That was enough for me to conclude I got sick from these fries and I won't be eatign them again. I know it wasn't in my head. I eat other thigns with xanthan gum (like Udi's) and canola oil and pretty much all the other ingredients (potatoes, seasonings, etc) in those fries and I don't have a reaction. Again, please don't discount cc just because YOU don't have reactions to tiny amounts.

I never accused anyone of making anything up so you really should take a few deep breaths before posting in anger. And who said I do not react to small amounts of cc? Actually, I am an extremely sensitive, diagnosed Celiac who had no villi left so don't go and accuse people in this group of not reacting. Actually, I do not eat processed foods like french fries when I can make them safer and better at home...that's how careful I have to be.

What I don't do is assume that every reaction I have is from gluten. People can have the same reactions to gums or nightshades or many other products that don't sit well with celiacs and it has nothing to do with gluten. You can eat something successfully many times but that one time it won't work...doesn't mean it was from gluten. You'll never be able to prove it was because most companies that are this mainstream do not test for gluten and they only test to a certain level so those who think they react to 1 or 2 ppm may not be because there is no test to prove it.

I go to the dentist and have impressions made a lot, which contain gums. Never reacted to gums before but one time they used a lot and did many impressions. That nearly sent me to the ER. I learned I can tolerate a small amount but anything more than that and I am incapacitated.

I was responding to the poster who brought up a very good point about the problem maybe stemming from some other food issue. You'll never get to the bottom of it if you keep blaming everything on gluten contamination.

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I never accused anyone of making anything up so you really should take a few deep breaths before posting in anger. And who said I do not react to small amounts of cc? Actually, I am an extremely sensitive, diagnosed Celiac who had no villi left so don't go and accuse people in this group of not reacting. Actually, I do not eat processed foods like french fries when I can make them safer and better at home...that's how careful I have to be.

What I don't do is assume that every reaction I have is from gluten. People can have the same reactions to gums or nightshades or many other products that don't sit well with celiacs and it has nothing to do with gluten. You can eat something successfully many times but that one time it won't work...doesn't mean it was from gluten. You'll never be able to prove it was because most companies that are this mainstream do not test for gluten and they only test to a certain level so those who think they react to 1 or 2 ppm may not be because there is no test to prove it.

I go to the dentist and have impressions made a lot, which contain gums. Never reacted to gums before but one time they used a lot and did many impressions. That nearly sent me to the ER. I learned I can tolerate a small amount but anything more than that and I am incapacitated.

I was responding to the poster who brought up a very good point about the problem maybe stemming from some other food issue. You'll never get to the bottom of it if you keep blaming everything on gluten contamination.

Your exact words were: "You can't have a gluten reaction if there is little to no gluten in a product"

I'm not angry but I am going to correct you. Many of us DO have reactions to little gluten. If you are saying that you are super sensitive to cc then you should be aware of that. Perhaps you should have just said "You can't have a reaction to gluten if there is NO gluten", but then that can't be proven can it? It's reasonable to question other intolerances. I am always the first to suggest other food intolerances and I see nothing wrong with that suggestion. but I take offense when someone posts that it's impossible to react to little amounts of gluten. I apologize for jumping to conclusions because you didn't say that it was all in our head but you did say it can't be a gluten reaction.

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kareng    1,992

I think we have another great example of Forum Misperception Syndrome.

FMPS manifests when we cannot see or hear the other person's facial expressions or hear the tone of voice. And the typist cannot see us looking at them like this :unsure: or ;) or :blink: when they are typing. If they could, they would realize something wasn't coming across correctly.

This syndrome shows up on all forums, even the "Ford Ranger Forum". So my son has told me.

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plumbago    30

Alexia brand frozen potato and sweet potato products (except for potato bites) had gluten free on the label and were made in a gluten-free facility up until now. Due to expansion, they are going to be made in a facility that also processes wheat (possibly also shared equipment. Their printed statement to their employees is somewhat vague on this, so the lovely gal I spoke to was having difficulty finding out information about the equipment line). They now say that they can no longer guarantee there won't be trace amounts of gluten cc.

New potato products made in this shared facility will no longer carry the gluten free label, however, so you can spot them that way. Per the Alexia rep, if a product still has 'gluten free' printed on it, it was made in the gluten free facility.

I have never seen "gluten free" on Alexia frozen potato products. You say they are going to expand. Do you know when? I bought the julienne sweet potato fries last night. No mention of gluten free.

Added:

http://www.alexiafoods.com/faq.jsp

Their FAQs say their potato items are gluten-free w/ exception of the potato bites, I think.

So does that mean that the expansion has not yet taken place?

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T.H.    404

The person I spoke to didn't give me a specific date for the changeover, but did say that any of the packages that were made in the gluten-free facility would have 'gluten free' on the package itself.

If 'gluten free' was nowhere on the package, then I was told that I should assume this indicated it was made at the shared facility and that it was no longer gluten-free.

That said - it took me two tries to get this answer. I looked at the FAQ first, but because of our sensitivity, I always call up to check on whether there is a gluten free line/facility for the product. The first person I spoke to assured me that their product was gluten free and 'must' be made in a gluten-free facility because otherwise they couldn't call it gluten free. That was what was required for something to be gluten free, by law. I asked if they were in the USA, and they were.

Which then made me concerned, considering that this is not at all what the law actually is in the US, ya know? :rolleyes:

That's when I called a second time, and the second person I spoke to had the details of the change over, and knew that their company is the one that makes the rule that if they aren't using a gluten-free facility, they will not label their product gluten free. So, a little less clueless the second time.

I'm sure that if you call, though, they may have some information on when the change over is supposed to take place, or if any of the gluten-free ones actually CAN be made without the gluten-free label on it.

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GFinDC    609

I think we have another great example of Forum Misperception Syndrome.

FMPS manifests when we cannot see or hear the other person's facial expressions or hear the tone of voice. And the typist cannot see us looking at them like this :unsure: or ;) or :blink: when they are typing. If they could, they would realize something wasn't coming across correctly.

This syndrome shows up on all forums, even the "Ford Ranger Forum". So my son has told me.

Oh crap, I think I have that FMPS! My eyes get all bugged out and my rear starts to swell up and itch. Plus I go cross-eyed and can't sit still. And my face gets all red and angry looking. :ph34r: So nice to finally have a name for it! Just another one for the list... :) I hope I didn't misunderstand your post tho...!

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Just because YOU don't react to a "little gluten" please don't accuse people that do react to very small amounts of making things up.

I so agree. If I had listened every time someone told me that I couldn't be reacting to trace gluten in something, I'd still be sick today instead of feeling better than I have since I was a child.
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Salax    34

Moving back to topic. :D Love you guys! Any ways, I just recently bought these and tried them the first time, they were pretty tasty. I did not see the cya statement or facility statement yet on them.

BUT I was thinking, this company had basically declared gluten free status on some of their products, so that leads me to believe they are aware of cc and gluten free testing, etc.

Perhaps...at least I would hope that even on shared equipment they would be wise enough to clean/detox, the lines before making the products? I know that most sensitive folks probably wouldn't eat them otherwise, but some of us still could?

Oddly, the hubby checked their website right before we bought them and they are still declaring gluten free status. That was about 4 days ago.

B)

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plumbago    30

This is on my list of ten thousand questions for the doctor. Just because we might not be sensitive, does that then correlate to no damage? I mean, can't we still be ingesting gluten and not tell? Only a blood test would tell? Is or is not gluten gluten? (!)

Plumbago

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