“Gluten Free” Food Labelling Leads to New Lawsuits

Posted on January 22, 2015 at 4:30pm by

Gluten free signalGetting sick from consuming gluten is an extremely painful experience for anyone suffering from Celiac Disease.  Fortunately, the FDA issued a new regulation effective immediately prohibiting “packaged food” from being labeled “Gluten Free” unless it meets a strict test for what qualifies as gluten-free.  One may think that being gluten-free means being entirely free of gluten — you would be mistaken.

Now,“Gluten-Free” means:

(1) the food does not contain any gluten-containing grain (e.g., spelt wheat); and

(2) the food does not contain an ingredient that is derived from a gluten-containing grain and that has not been processed to remove gluten (e.g., wheat flour);and

(3) the food does not contain an ingredient that is derived from a gluten-containing grain and that has been processed to remove gluten (e.g., wheat starch), if the use of that ingredient results in the presence of 20 parts per million (ppm) or more gluten in the food (i.e., 20 milligrams (mg) or more gluten per kilogram (kg) of food); and

(4) the food inherently does not contain gluten; and

(5)  any unavoidable presence of gluten in the food is below 20 ppm gluten (i.e., below 20 mg gluten per kg of food).

The FDA regulation only applies to packaged food, such as frozen items you might by at the grocery store.  Restaurants claiming to serve gluten-free food are NOT subject to this requirement.

If you believe you’ve purchased an item incorrectly labelled “Gluten-Free,” please contact our firm to discuss your legal rights.



Leave a Reply