Questions related to: Can I eat barley malt vinegar?

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Can I drink Tetley green tea?

We have spoken to the manufacturers of Tetley tea bags following concerns about the labelling on some of their green tea bags stating that they may contain gluten.

The manufacturer has told us that there is a risk of contamination with wheat gluten during production. They have labelled these products as a precautionary measure due to a risk of contamination in the tea bag. Any trace of gluten in the tea bag will be diluted in the brewed tea, so the level of gluten in the tea you are drinking will be well within the safe level for people with coeliac disease (20 parts per million or less).

Tetley are investigating the issue and trying to remove the risk of contamination. Once this is done they plan to remove the statement from the packaging, so you may see a mixture of packs on store shelves with and without the warning.

I've noticed that 'barley malt extract' is on the ingredients list of a breakfast cereal which is listed in the Food and Drink Information. Can I eat it?

There are a number of supermarket own brand breakfast cereals which contain a very small amount of barley malt extract. They are tested to make sure that they only contain a level of gluten which can be included in a gluten free diet (20 parts per million or less). Some retailers have their own Free From breakfast cereals too. These are listed on our online Food and Drink Information

Can I eat maltodextrin?

Maltodextrin is gluten-free. It can be made from a variety of cereal starches including wheat, corn (maize), tapioca and rice. Despite the name, maltodextrins are not produced from, nor do they contain barley malt. Even when maltodextrin has been made from wheat, the grain is processed to remove the gluten.

Can I drink spirits?

Even when cereal that contains gluten is used as an ingredient, all spirits are distilled during the manufacturing process and this process removes any trace of gluten. Therefore, all spirit drinks ( including malt whisky which is made from barely) are safe for people with coeliac disease.

Why is dried yeast now listed in the Food and Drink Information Service?

Fresh yeast is naturally gluten free. We are now aware of some brands of dried yeasts that now contain wheat starch in the ingredients so they are not gluten free. We therefore now list dried yeasts in the Food & Drink Information Service that do not contain gluten.

Can I only eat products listed in the Food and Drink Guide?

No. You do not have to limit yourself to products listed in the Food and Drink Guide.

The gluten free diet is made up of naturally gluten free foods such as fruit and vegetables, meat, fish and poultry, eggs, cream, milk, rice, potatoes, pulses and beans. We do not list every brand of these in the Food and Drink Guide but you can find a list of naturally gluten free ingredients on Page 6 & 7.

Is hydrolysed vegetable protein (HVP) gluten-free?

Hydrolysed vegetable protein (HVP) can be made from different cereals or soya. If a cereal that contains gluten, such as wheat, has been used manufacturers must list this in the ingredients (for example, hydrolysed wheat vegetable protein) in line with the EU wide allergen labelling law.

All prepacked foods bought in the UK are covered by current EU wide food labelling legislation. This means that if gluten is used as a deliberate ingredient it must appear on the ingredients list, no matter how much is used.

Manufacturers will name the grain, for example, wheat, rye, barley, oats, or some will use the word gluten as well such as wheat gluten. This information must be declared in the ingredients list and emphasised, for example in bold. Read more about the information that manufacturers must provide.

Why do some products in Section 1 have a Crossed Grain symbol next to them?

We are highlighting the products that use the Coeliac UK Crossed Grain symbol. Section 1 of this Guide has the symbol next to all products that hold the Crossed Grain symbol licence. New companies are licensed regularly, so don’t forget to check the monthly Food & Drink Guide updates for any additions. You can find a list of all companies using the Crossed Grain symbol on our website here.

 

Can I eat oats?

Oats do not contain gluten. They contain a similar protein called avenin and research has shown that most people with coeliac disease can safely eat avenin.

The main problem with a lot of the oats and oat products that you find in the supermarket is that they are very often contaminated with gluten from wheat, rye or barley during processing (such as harvesting or milling). Therefore, oats that are NOT labelled as gluten free should always be avoided.

Many specialist manufacturers now produce gluten free oats. 

If you have an ongoing symptoms or any concerns about including gluten free oats in your diet, please speak to your health professional.  

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