Skip to main content
*** NOTE: Terms of Service Updated 21 Feb 2018 ***

Food Labelled Gluten Free May Still Contain Gluten

  • Published: 2016-10-03 : The University of Western Australia.
  • Synopsis: Study finds some foods labelled gluten-free do not comply with Australian standard that requires GF-labelled foods to contain no detectable gluten.

Main Document

Quote: "Coeliac disease is the only common disease for which strict dietary compliance is the sole treatment: the 'gluten-free' diet."

How much gluten is in foods labelled 'gluten free'?

A study by The University of Western Australia of foods labelled 'gluten-free' published this week in the Medical Journal of Australia has found that some produced overseas do not comply with the Australian standard that requires GF-labelled foods to contain 'no detectable gluten'.

Coeliac disease (CD) is the only common disease for which strict dietary compliance is the sole treatment: the 'gluten-free' (GF) diet. Sensitivity to gluten varies between CD patients, with levels in food less than one part-per-million protecting most patients.

Despite this, international food codes only require foods labelled 'gluten-free' to contain less than 20 ppm gluten.

To find out how much gluten was present in imported GF products, research led by UWA Clinical Professor Geoff Forbes purchased 169 GF-labelled food items manufactured overseas from four retailers in Perth, Western Australia, to test them for gluten content.

The countries of origin were in Europe (nine countries), Asia (nine), and North (one) and South America (five).

The food categories included crackers, bread and biscuits (41 items), cereals, flour and grains (37), condiments and sauces (30), spices (21), pasta (16), drinks and soups (15) and confectionary and snacks (nine).

Gluten was detected in 24 (14 per cent) of products, but at very low levels in all.

Twenty items had detectable but unquantifiable levels of gluten (less than 1 part per million), and four had quantifiable levels (three with 1.0 ppm and one with 1.1 ppm).

"Our findings have important implications. Firstly, despite tiny traces of gluten being found in 14 per cent of the foods tested, CD patients can confidently consume GF-products purchased in Australia," Professor Forbes said.

"Secondly, a marked tightening of international GF standards is readily achievable by industry."

Professor Forbes said the study also showed that standards in Australia were impractical.

"We recommended that Australian authorities revise the current Australian standard of 'no detectable gluten' to 'one ppm or less' as it is not practical or reasonable for industry to comply with the current Australian standard," he said.

Similar Topics

1 : FDA, FTC Warn Companies for Selling Illegal, Unapproved Opioid Cessation Products Using Deceptive Claims : HHS.
2 : Yemen Cholera Outbreak Is The World's Worst : World Health Organization.
3 : Some Hip Implants May be Toxic to the Brain : Health Watch USA.
4 : Thermal Paper Cash Register Receipts Account for High BPA Levels in Humans : University of Missouri.
5 : First Candida Auris Cases Reported in United States : Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
From our Warnings - Alerts & Advisories section - Full List (42 Items)

Submit disability news, coming events, as well as assistive technology product news and reviews.


Loan Information for low income singles, families, seniors and disabled. Includes home, vehicle and personal loans.


Famous People with Disabilities - Well known people with disabilities and conditions who contributed to society.


List of awareness ribbon colors and their meaning. Also see our calendar of awareness dates.


Blood Pressure Chart - What should your blood pressure be, and information on blood group types/compatibility.




1 : Free Eye Exams to Service and Working Animals in May from Veterinary Ophthalmologists
2 : Early Childhood Education Needs to be Accessible and Affordable
3 : How the Human Brain Can Tell Our Arms and Legs Apart
4 : Protein Levels in Spinal Fluid Correlate to Posture and Gait Difficulty in Parkinson's Disease

Citation


Disclaimer: This site does not employ and is not overseen by medical professionals. Content on Disabled World is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of a physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. See our Terms of Service for more information.

Reporting Errors: Disabled World is an independent website, your assistance in reporting outdated or inaccurate information is appreciated. If you find an error please let us know.