Gluten Regulation now in force

17 August, 2016
Rachael Robinson

On the 20 July 2016, Regulation (EU) No 828/2014 came into force on the requirements for the provision of information to consumers on the absence or reduced presence of gluten in food.

The change centres on the ‘gluten free’ and ‘very low gluten’ labels currently in use. Under the new rules, manufacturers and caterers will no longer be able to use the phrase ‘no gluten-containing ingredients’ (NGCI); ‘gluten free’ and ‘very low gluten’ labelling rules will remain unchanged.

Caterers and manufacturers typically use the NGCI label when they cannot guarantee the absence of gluten as a result of cross contamination.

Under the rules, to label something as ‘gluten free’ it must not contain more than 20 parts per million gluten and to label something as ‘very low gluten’ it must not contain more than 100 parts per million gluten.

The law on gluten-free applies to foods sold pre-packed and those sold in catering establishments. To label gluten-free you need to be sure that the dishes you are serving contain no more than 20 parts per million of gluten. This doesn’t mean that you need to test every meal, but spot testing can be useful to check that the processes you have in place to produce gluten-free meals are effective.

It is possible to produce gluten-free foods, simply follow the advice below:

  1. Choosing and using the right ingredients: ensure you use the right ingredients, from reputable suppliers.
  2. Storage: store ingredients and finished dishes correctly to avoid cross contamination.
  3. Preparation: control the risks of cross contamination at all stages of preparation, for example using clean oil for frying, clean water for boiling, clean surfaces, etc.
  4. Cleaning: clean utensils and surfaces.
  5. Personal hygiene: wash hands thoroughly between using gluten-containing and gluten-free ingredients.
  6. Communication: ensure there is a system in place to that customers are provided with correct information.
  7. Training: provide training to all staff on all aspects of preparation and serving of gluten-free food.
  8. Due diligence and validation: you must ensure that processes, documentation and training are kept up to date and that regular checks are carried out.
  9. Complaints: record and investigate all customer complaints.

To find out how Acoura can help yoiu meet regulatory requirements you can contact us on 0330 024 0255. 

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