‘Gluten-Free’ Labeling Rules Head to White House
By Megan R. Wilson – The Hill
New rules dictating what foods can be labeled “gluten free” have arrived at the White House for final review, according to federal records.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been working on the labeling requirements for gluten-free foods since 2005. The regulation has been named “economically significant,” meaning it has a benefit of $100 million or more on the economy.
On Monday, the rule headed to the White House’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), which it will need to pass through before being enacted.
“Establishing a definition of the term ‘gluten-free’ and uniform conditions for its use in the labeling of foods is necessary to ensure that individuals with celiac disease are not misled and are provided with truthful and accurate information with respect to foods so labeled,” FDA said in a 2011 re-opening of the proposal.
In the rule, the FDA defines a product as “gluten free” if it does not contain the following: wheat, rye, barley, or any hybrid of these grains; ingredients such as wheat flour that have not been processed to remove gluten; or any item made up of more than 20 parts per million of gluten.
Celiac disease is a genetic disorder, also known as gluten intolerance, affecting at least 1 in 133 Americans, according to Celiac.com.
There are currently 143 rules and proposals sitting at OIRA, 84 of which have been sitting for more than the 90-day review limit imposed on the White House.