Gluten-Free Cheerios: Take Three
This is the latest in a series of news posts on gluten-free oats. For complete information, please refer to the articles posted HERE.
Gluten Free Watchdog test results: We have completed testing on three individual boxes of original (yellow box) Cheerios labeled gluten-free. Test results and a full report are publicly available at www.glutenfreewatchdog.org. On the homepage, please scroll down to “Sample Product Reports” on the left hand side of the page.
Putting gluten test results into context
In 2014, Gluten Free Watchdog published three years worth of testing data in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Summary findings are as follows:
Number of unique food products tested: 158
Products testing below 5 ppm: 137 (86.7%)*
Products testing from 5 to < 10 ppm: 6 (3.8%)
Products testing from > 10 to < 20 ppm: 7 (4.4%)
Products testing > 20 ppm: 8 (5.1%)
*Products categorized by gluten levels based on the highest extraction result.
If Gluten Free Watchdog test results for Cheerios were included in this analysis they would fall in the 5 to < 10 ppm category.
Latest test results provided by General Mills: On August 25, 2015 General Mills advised me that, “… all the lots of Yellow Box Cheerios are testing below 15 ppm. Lots of the other Gluten Free Cheerios products are testing below 10 ppm.”
Final words: You must decide for yourself what gluten-free oat-based foods you will eat. And you should base your decision on the totality of information available to you. But do keep in mind that we have a purity protocol for oats for a reason. If having sources of pure oats available to you is important please continue to support the efforts of those companies that source their oats from growers who follow a purity protocol, such as GF Harvest, Marshall Gluten-Free Mill, Avena Foods, and Montana Gluten-Free.
Note to manufacturers: If you source your oats from a supplier of pure oats please consider including this information on your product label.
Note to manufacturers and consumers: General Mills is not the only supplier of oats to the gluten-free community that cleans “regular” oats via mechanical and/or optical sorting. Please ask questions when sourcing and purchasing oat products if a purity protocol is important to you.