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The certification includes product reviews, facility and product inspections, and required testing for gluten at less than 10 parts per million.
The National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA; Ambler, PA) is a critical piece of the U.S. gluten-free community, advocating celiac disease awareness and hosting gluten-free training sessions for food manufacturers and health professionals. Now, the NFCA has launched a new gluten-free seal with the support of leading organic certifier Quality Assurance International (QAI; San Diego).
The science-based gluten-free seal will require that all certified products be produced at less than 10 ppm (parts per million) of gluten. Product reviews, onsite (and ongoing) facility and product inspections are also part of the program.
For what the NFCA says is an estimated 17 million families looking for gluten-free foods, the new seal provides a method of security for celiacs at a time when gluten-free assurance is weak. As Jennifer North, NFCA vice president told Nutritional Outlook:
The FDA has been working on a definition for gluten-free for some time as they too see this increasing consumer-demand. Ideally, a time will come when there is a federal law governing the production and labeling of gluten-free foods. Until that happens, the QAI Certification Program complete with independent testing, review, and inspection by a third-party to validate gluten-free label claims is an excellent step for a company to take to prove they took extra assurance steps.
The QAI-NFCA seal can also be bundled with QAI’s organic seal.