Author Archives: Tricia Thompson

Gluten Free Certification – What Does It Mean to You?

Currently we have a proposed government definition of the term “gluten-free” for food labeling purposes but no final rule. Under the proposed rule, a labeled gluten-free food has to contain less than 20 parts per million of gluten. When the final rule is released this number could stay the same, go up, or go down—a little or a lot.

The amount of gluten a labeled gluten-free food is allowed to contain is only part of the story. Another part is testing. The FDA stated in its proposed rule that it is tentatively considering using the standard sandwich R5 ELISA and the Morinaga wheat protein ELISA to test food products for gluten when necessary to assess misbranding. In contrast, FDA did not include the omega-gliadin (Skerritt) ELISA among the methods it was considering. One of the limitations discussed in the scientific literature regarding this ELISA is its underestimation of barley protein.

At the present time the R5 ELISA (Ridascreen Gliadin R7001) is widely regarded as the best available validated ELISA for assessing final food product for gluten. In my opinion, all labeled gluten-free foods should be periodically tested using Read More »

Update on FDA’s Gluten-Free Food Labeling Rule

Rhonda Kane, MS, RD, Consumer Safety Officer at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), provided us with the following status report on FDA’s gluten-free food labeling rulemaking:

The headquarters of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is seen in Silver Spring, Maryland.

“FDA published a proposed rule to define the food labeling term “gluten-free” on January 23, 2007, which had a 90-day public comment period that closed on April 23, 2007.  As discussed on page 2803 of the proposed rule (posted under the subheading “Gluten-Free”), FDA committed to conducting a safety assessment on gluten exposure in individuals with celiac disease.  FDA conducted this safety assessment in accordance with the data quality criteria discussed in Read More »

Barley Malt Ingredients in Labeled Gluten-free Foods

Barley malt ingredients continue to pop up in foods labeled gluten free. There seems to be confusion among some manufacturers regarding the use of these ingredients. Hopefully the following information will be of help to both consumers and manufacturers. Please let me know if you have any questions.

 Some issues to be aware of…

Manufactures should consider the following before making the decision to include barley malt ingredients in their labeled gluten-free products: Read More »

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