FDA’s Gluten-Free Labeling: Submit Your Comments by the Deadline

If you haven’t read how to add your comments to the FDA’s Regulations on gluten-free labeling, you may read the instructions and about the issue at http://glutenfreerecipebox.com/gluten-free-labeling-fda. I updated that post so you will know how to view comments left by others, as well. Below, I share my comment that I left for the FDA on gluten-free labeling. I hope you submit yours today, before the October 3, 2011 deadline.

I not only commented on gluten-free labeling, but on “low gluten” labeling. See the comment that I left below:

Though I am concerned for the small businesses that will need to make adjustments to allow for gluten testing, I feel very concerned that there are no set standards yet in place in the U.S for those with a high gluten intolerance such as celiac disease. As a consultant in the industry, I hear all too often that those with celiac disease had a bad reaction to a food that claimed to be gluten-free, though I do take into account that their reaction could have been due to an additional food intolerance (dairy, grain, etc.), food allergy or other issue.

Gluten-intolerant individuals are not the only ones at risk. As an individual with a gluten sensitivity which results in nerve pain, I have discovered that gluten is not digested by anyone’s body. It must be controlled, especially for those at high risk.

I do not believe that by setting the standard at what we in the U.S. can easily test at, 5 ppm, would hurt our economy. Setting the standard lower, may even bring more business to the U.S., instead of the imported products which currently exist. This may drive the prices higher for awhile, however, with the demand for gluten-free food increasing at an exponential rate, I believe this issue will be moot.

I would like to see the U.S. be a leader in the gluten-free community, or at least meeting the Australian standards of 5ppm, which is already available in the U.S. through ELISA testing.

In regards to providing labeling standards for “low gluten” food, I believe this is unnecessary. Gluten-free is what is in demand. However, if there were enough manufacturers who did not wish to meet the under 5 ppm standard, perhaps they would wish to label their foods “low gluten”. In this case, I believe an under 20 ppm should be the requirement. This way, if someone were to be confused about the issue, “gluten-free” versus “low gluten”, they would not be consuming a high amount of gluten if they consumed a “low gluten” food.

Best regards,

Carla Spacher

Leave your comment regarding gluten-free labeling now at http://www.regulations.gov


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