We’ve been in the Gluten-Free business for about some time now. We’ve been extremely diligent in sourcing our ingredient from Gluten-Free certified suppliers so that our products have no risk of gluten in them. It hasn’t been an easy ride, but I’ve found the right ones. Gluten sensitive and Coeliac Londoners…
Here’s a quick eye-opening story for you:
I call the top UK online wholesalers and retailers to ask if their products are gluten-free. The agent
on the phone reassures me with a yes several times. I feel good, we’ve got our suppliers sorted.
A couple of days later I am awaiting this hefty shipment to come in and the courier arrives to drop it
off. Me and my baker are unveiling the goodies when my eye falls on this:
“Due to packaging methods this item may contain traces of soya, sesame, and gluten.”
So I call the supplier and ask whether there is a mistake on the product labels. He says there
aren’t any mistakes in the labels. I then proceed to ask if they are gluten-free and he says YES
I was so shocked and thrown back by this reply, because it all made sense pretty fast. The gluten-free products being sold are naturally gluten-free but the manufacturer maybe the one introducing the contamination, which means it’s not really gluten-free.
To find out GF Definition by Coeliac UK visit this link.
The definition of Gluten-Free foods by the food standards agency (FSA), the UK’s official food
regulatory and governing body, is as follows:
“Suitable for people with coeliac disease (these foods can have no more than 20 parts of gluten per million). – See more at: Food Gov Website”
Knowing this definition, i proceeded to ask the following:
- How can it have traces of gluten if it is gluten-free?
- How can they guarantee these traces are less than 20ppm to guarantee the product is gluten-free?
The honest answer is you cannot guarantee that the item is GF.
For this reason I ask all of you Coeliacs, Gluten-Intolerant, and lifestyle choosers to make sure that
your Gluten-Free foods are packaged in gluten-free environments, and have been handled by
equipment that does not handle any gluten whatsoever.
If the following conditions are not met you cannot logically label a food as Gluten-Free:
1. Are the foods naturally gluten-free
2. Are they packaged in a gluten-free environment
If these 2 conditions are met you can be very confident about your food safety.
Shop away you healthy bees, and stay tuned for more posts. We’ve got your back!