The National Foundation of Celiac Awareness (NFCA), a non-profit organization serving individuals with celiac disease (CD) and other gluten-related disorders, has announced its alliance with the Gluten-Free Certification Program (GFCP), formed by Canadian Celiac Association (CCA) to introduce the first gluten-free certification program to cross international boundaries and to be endorsed by the leading celiac disease organizations in Canada and the United States (US).
Alice Bast, president of NFCA, states, “The GFCP alliance means consumers with CD and gluten sensitivity will have more choices, greater assurance and an easier way to identify gluten-free products that are trusted and safe. The GFCP has already achieved great success in Canada and we are eager to expand its benefits to our community here in the US.”
This new GF certification seal will assure consumers that the company has complied to strict gluten management procedures which includes ingredient sourcing, storage, employee training, accountability measures and a variety of other elements that are part of the international Global Food Safety Initiative, on which the program is modeled. It will also assure the consumer that the finished product has tested under ten parts per million (ppm) of gluten. Studies indicate that people with a CD diagnosis can tolerate up to 10-20 ppm of gluten in a product. Be aware this might not be the case for everybody.
“The (GF) landscape is crowded with gluten-free label claims and it’s difficult for consumers to understand what they mean,” says Jennifer North, vice president of the NFCA, “Some claims are backed up by symbols, often created by manufacturers themselves.” This new GFCP seal will ensure that a non-biased third party organization has examined and approved the GF procedures within that company.
“We at the GFCP are very excited about our partnership with the NFCA. By combining the endorsement of the NFCA and their strong industry relationships, together with the technical strengths of our program, I am confident we will be able to deliver a comprehensive value proposition that is yet to be seen in the US marketplace,” said Paul Valder, President of the Gluten-Free Certification Program.
This new GF certification seal joins the market with two other third party GF certification organizations: Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG) of North America and the Celiac Sprue Association.
About the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness The National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA) is a US-based 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that drives diagnoses of celiac disease and other gluten-related disorders and improves the quality of life for those on a lifelong gluten-free diet. For more information visit CeliacCentral.org. About the Gluten-Free Certification Program The Gluten-Free Certification Program (GFCP) was developed so consumers can shop with confidence by selecting those safe, reliable and gluten-free products displaying the GFCP trademark and is endorsed by the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness and the Canadian Celiac Association.
The GFCP is a voluntary certification program designed to help brand owners differentiate their gluten-free products from the increasing clutter of gluten-free claims in the market place, by displaying the GFCP trademark. Based on a robust third-party audit certification process at the manufacturing facility, the GFCP verifies the ability to regularly meet stringent requirements, when managing gluten as part of their food safety programs.