NFCA Certified Gluten-Free
Gluten-free certification is a process designed to protect consumers with gluten-related disorders by confirming that a food, drink or supplement meets strict standards for gluten-free safety. It assures consumers that there is third-party oversight confirming the legitimacy of the manufacturer’s gluten-free claims. There are several certifying bodies that offer gluten-free certification, and each has its own criteria to ensure safety for consumers. Typically, the criteria includes testing the gluten content of the finished product. The current systems for gluten-free certification require gluten-free products to contain less than 10 parts per million (ppm) (NFCA/GFCP, GFCO, QAI/NSF International) or less than 5 ppm of gluten (CSA Seal of Recognition). These requirements go above and beyond the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s threshold of less than 20 ppm of gluten, adding an extra level of assurance for consumers and an extra point of distinction for manufacturers. It’s important to note that the federal regulations for gluten-free labeling cover FDA-regulated foods only (this includes dietary supplements). Some gluten-free certifications, on the other hand, will allow for non-food products like lotions to be certified gluten-free. Again, this depends on the certifying body and its criteria. In the grocery store, gluten-free certification makes it easier to identify safe and trusted products. Products that have been certified gluten-free will typically bear a symbol on the label, so customers with celiac disease and other gluten-related disorders can quickly and easily recognize the symbol and know that the product has earned approval.