2005N-0279 Food Labeling; Gluten-Free Labeling of Foods; Public Meeting
FDA Comment Number : EC975
Submitter : Mrs. Karen Piotrowski Date & Time: 09/14/2005 06:09:32
Organization : Mrs. Karen Piotrowski
Category : Individual Consumer
Issue Areas/Comments
GENERAL
GENERAL
1) What should gluten-free mean on a food label? Completely devoid of any gluten. Why? Because of the health risks for individuals who require gluten free food. There is no medicine or 'fix' for someone who has ingested gluten.
2) How do you identify foods that do not contain gluten? I rely on lists compiled by organizations such as Celiac Sprue Association to inform me what is safe to eat and which ingredients to beware of. Time spent identifying foods? My time grocery shopping is now doubled - I must read every single label of any food I want to eat.
3) What percentage of foods and which types purchased are marked gluten-free? The only foods marked as gluten free are those in the health/natural food section of my grocery store. Distilled vinegar vs 'vinegar' is the toughest challenge since some of the foods that I know are safe for me to eat are labeled with 'vinegar' (which is not supposed to be safe to ingest). The process could be better.
4) Does gluten-free printed on a product label influence your decision to purchase products having the same ingredients? No, it makes me more cautious. It's like the vinegar vs distilled vinegar problem. To what extent? Example:Two cans of tomato sauce on the shelf both contain only tomatoes and salt and only one is marked gluten-free.

NEW QUESTION

5) Would you consider a two or more level definition of gluten-free helpful? Not really, since individuals with this affliction must live a totally gluten free livestyle. The gluten makes us sick - period.

Example: If Level A meant the absence of any wheat, barley, rye, oats and any of their derivatives and level B meant the presence of trace amounts, less than 'X' parts per million, of wheat, barley, rye, oats and any of their derivatives and level C meant the presence of small amounts, less than 'Y' parts per million, wheat, barley, rye, oats and any of their derivatives. (Using 'X' and 'Y' to identify quantities to be determined by the FDA.)