A gluten-free label

Not 100 percent, but close enough

August 15, 2013

Until early August, people with wheat allergies, celiac disease, or other gluten issues had to simply trust that foods labeled “gluten free” really were. But now the FDA has unveiled a labeling standard for gluten-free foods. As Sasha Ingber reported for National Geographic, the standard isn’t completely gluten-free, but it should be close enough:

To comply with the FDA’s new rules, products labeled “gluten-free” must contain less than 20 parts per million of the protein — or about an eighth of a teaspoon of flour in 18 slices of gluten-free bread. That’s low enough for most people who have mild to severe gluten allergies.

As National Public Radio noted, it’s taken the FDA a whopping nine years to develop the standard — and the labeling rule won’t go into effect for another year. So keep scrutinizing those labels, folks.

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