From the August 3, 2013 NYTimes article by Sabrina Tavernise: The agency (F. D. A.) set a gluten limit of 20 parts per million in products labeled gluten free, said Michael R. Taylor, deputy commissioner for foods and veterinary medicine at the F.D.A. The limit had long been discussed and did not come as a surprise to industry or patient advocate groups. It was similar to the level adopted in recent years by the European Union and Canada, Mr. Taylor said.
Thanks to Sloane Miller, Allergic Girl for alerting me to the new F.D.A. standards for foods labeled gluten-free. I am overjoyed that the gluten-free community now has a standard that says no more than 20ppm gluten can be in a product claiming to be gluten-free. For many years it took trying products to see if the product was alright for those of us who must avoid gluten. We shared the information among ourselves on phone calls and through texting. We had to ferret out the products that were truly gluten-free. This ruling takes away the worry. The other great news is that many producers of gluten-free products are holding themselves to a 10ppm standard.
If you don’t know what gluten is, it is the protein composite found in certain cereal grains like rye, barley, and wheat. It adds elasticity to dough, and is an additive to some foods in order to boost the protein content. In the past five years, gluten avoidance has been on the rise due to dietary reasons. However, there are some of us who cannot tolerate gluten, we have a gluten intolerance.
The new F. D. A Standard for foods labeled gluten free is a very good reason to celebrate.