It says “gluten-free wheat starch” in the ingredients list. Is it really gluten-free? - Fria

It says “gluten-free wheat starch” in the ingredients list. Is it really gluten-free?

Gluten-free wheat starch is produced by washing off the gluten from wheat flour. The process splits the wheat flour into two different parts, starch and water-insoluble gluten. The washing process is so thorough that the starch that remains contains a maximum of 20 mg gluten/kg. This type of wheat starch is approved for use in the production of gluten-free products in accordance with the rules of Codex Alimentarius (approved in the EU, Canada, and the USA). The limit value of 20 ppm (parts per million) or 20 mg/kg for gluten-free products is the same regardless of whether the product is made of wheat starch, maize, rice or something else. We set high standards for our suppliers, and wheat starch purity is checked by way of regular analyses. The final products are also analysed to guarantee that the gluten content in all our products is below the threshold.

Coeliacs in the Nordic countries and the United Kingdom have been eating products with gluten-free wheat starch for 40 years, and several scientific studies have shown that the small intestine heals just as well on a wheat starch-based diet as on a natural gluten-free diet. Nevertheless, a minority of coeliacs cannot tolerate wheat starch, and neither we nor the experts are capable of explaining exactly why that is. The best guess is that it is a matter of sensitivity to another substance in the wheat that can create similar symptoms.

The reason why we use gluten-free wheat starch is because of its good baking properties. Gluten-free bread baked with gluten-free wheat starch often has a better texture and consistency. The taste experience more closely resembles bread containing gluten rather than bread based on rice or maize, for instance, which can contribute to a better quality of life for many coeliacs.


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