The impact of federal government agencies on the celiac disease patient community cannot be overstated.
We often share with you our work on behalf of the celiac disease patient community with the National Institutes of Health – the world’s leading biomedical research agency – and our work with Congress to secure research funding. Notably, the Celiac Disease Foundation, together with our advocacy counsel in Washington, D.C., is also spearheading a robust lobbying effort to actively engage other key agencies, including Congressional committees, the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Defense, and Health and Human Services, and the Centers for Disease Control. We are committed to developing and strengthening these relationships as they are pivotal to our ongoing advocacy efforts.
One of the key relationships we have firmly established that delivers tremendous value is our partnership with the Food and Drug Administration.
As a result of our work, we are pleased to announce that the Celiac Disease Foundation will host an Ask-the-FDA Educational Webinar on October 13, 2022. In this forum, representatives from the FDA will share with our community important information regarding how the agency develops, interprets, maintains, and enforces the U.S. gluten-free labeling program. FDA representatives will also be answering previously submitted questions from our community about the gluten-free labeling rule.
If you haven’t already done so, you may submit your question here by September 9.
Additionally, our colleagues from the Association of European Coeliac Societies (AOECS) will present information about the different gluten-free labeling standards and testing regimens used in Europe.
The need for this patient education opportunity is clear.
The FDA issued its final rule in 2013 to define the term “gluten-free” and uniform conditions for its use in food labeling. “Gluten-free” is a voluntary claim that can be used by food manufacturers on food labels if they meet the necessary regulatory requirements. A subsequent rule issued in 2020 addressed the gluten-free labeling of fermented or hydrolyzed foods. However, considerable confusion remains for the celiac patient community, celiac disease clinicians, and dietitians and nutritionists – particularly regarding interpretation and enforcement. As a gluten-free diet remains the only approved treatment for celiac disease, clarity on gluten-free labeling laws is critical to the well-being of our patient community.
Registration for the webinar will open soon. Please submit your questions by the September 9 deadline to learn more about gluten-free labeling. We encourage you to make your voice heard.
As always, this webinar and all we do on behalf of the celiac disease patient community is made possible by your generous donations. We thank you.
To Our Health,
Marilyn G. Geller