2005N-0279 Food Labeling; Gluten-Free Labeling of Foods; Public Meeting
FDA Comment Number : EC946
Submitter : Ms. Wendy Read Date & Time: 09/14/2005 06:09:29
Organization : Ms. Wendy Read
Category : Individual Consumer
Issue Areas/Comments
FDA Docket No. 2005N-0279

Please consider the following in determining the Gluten-Free labeling on food labels:

1. A Gluten-Free food label should mean that the food contains no gluten and was manufactured in a facility free of gluten products to prevent the possibility of cross contamination.
2. The identification of Gluten-Free foods by the consumer is a time consuming process, as ALL fine print on the packaging MUST currently be reviewed for hidden wording that indicates the product was produced in a facility that also produces wheat products, which can cause physical problems for the Celiac due to the possibility of cross-contamination. The use of the phrase 'No Gluten Added' is also misleading, as this type of product often offers a high probability of cross-contamination.
3. Currently, very few foods have labeling indicating whether they are 'Gluten-Free,' and often products include ingredients which are of questionable safety to Celiacs. Having specific labeling regulations which are sensitive to the needs of Celiacs would take the guess work out of understanding questionable ingredients such as 'natural flavoring'.
4. If given a choice between a product marked Gluten-Free and the same product with the same ingredients that is NOT marked gluten free, I will always choose the one marked Gluten-Free, to minimize the possibility of cross contamination from gluten products manufactured in the same facility, as well as hidden gluten in ingredients such as mayonnaise and vanilla.

Please ensure all Celiacs of complete and accurate labeling of Gluten-Free food products by allowing only foods manufactured in Gluten-Free facilities to be labeled as Gluten-Free.

Thank you.