The recent announcement that Domino’s Pizza was offering gluten-free pizza took the GF world by storm. Everywhere we looked last week, there was some sort of story about whether this pizza was safe for those needing a GF diet. It was obviously not safe for celiacs (Domino’s even stated that on their website) but what about the gluten intolerant community?
The biggest issue was that the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness gave Domino’s an Amber Designation. This means that the food is safe for “some” but not everyone needing a GF diet. Many people and non-profit groups protested the NFCA Amber Designation and they have just issued a press release acknowledging that they have made an error and that they will be removing this designation for Domino’s.
If nothing else, this goes to show that we desperately need GF labeling laws in this country. The good news is that the issue was forced to be discussed in a more timely manner. I cringed when I saw my good friend’s son with Celiac eating a slice of Domino’s pizza. I saw the post on FaceBook and I thought – oh no – don’t eat it! Then I shifted gears and was so excited that he could finally feel “normal” and get a pizza delivered to his house and eat with everyone else.
I can’t wait for the day when we can all eat safely together. When we don’t need to worry that things are labeled properly. When our kids don’t feel that they are “different” and can eat what everyone else is eating.
Thanks to everyone that has continuously lobbied and labored to make our allergen and celiac world a better place. We still have a long way to go but at least Domino’s won’t be getting us sick while we are waiting…
PRESS RELEASE FROM NFCA
May 18, 2012
STATEMENT BY NATIONAL FOUNDATION FOR CELIAC AWARENESS
NFCA to Conduct Further Study on Amber Designation
The National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA) launched its Tiered Credentialing system in April 2012 in response to a growing concern in the restaurant industry around cross contamination. While the NFCA recognizes the importance of alerting consumers to cross-contamination risks, the community response has prompted NFCA to reconsider the Amber Designation and related product labeling as an effective method to
communicate these risks. Given the public response and recent developments in this field, NFCA is suspending the use of the “Amber” designation to describe a restaurant or foodservice establishment. We will conduct a review to determine the most effective and clearest way to warn the community of the risk of cross contamination and the use of the phrase “Gluten Free.”
While we regret that confusion may have occurred in relation to the Amber Designation, we do welcome and appreciate the attention this important issue of gluten sensitivity and celiac disease has received through this dialogue. We note that the education of the public, healthcare providers, the restaurant and foodservice industry, and those who are affected by gluten related disorders has been enhanced by this recent media coverage concerning these designation and labeling issues, as have the interests of those maintaining a medically necessary gluten-free diet.
For more information: www.celiacCentral.org