The first thought that ran through my mind when I heard Domino’s was planning on having gluten-free pizza crusts was how could they possibly pull that off? In a post on the Gluten Intolerance Group site Producing Gluten-Free Products in a Non-Dedicated Kitchen it explains that air-borne wheat flour can remain in the air for up to 24 hours. A whole day. This air-borne flour can then contaminate the gluten- free pizza crusts if they are prepared in the same kitchen.
I understand gluten-free is a huge market right now. In 2010, gluten-free foods racked up $2.5 billion in global sales, accounting for more than a quarter of all food-intolerance purchases, according to Euromonitor International. Many food businesses are trying to figure out how to cash in on this growing market.
But as we are learning in this case with Domino’s pizza just because we’re told something is gluten-free it doesn’t necessarily mean it is safe for someone with celiac disease to eat. Recently Domino’s came out with this statement:
“Domino’s and the NFCA found that while the crust is certified as gluten-free, current store operations at Domino’s cannot guarantee that each handcrafted pizza will be completely free from gluten,” the company’s news release said.
Dr. Fasano at the University of Maryland Center for Celiac Research released a statement as well stating that Domino’s pizza was not believed to be safe for those with gluten related disorders to consume.
It’s a double edged sword. On one hand it’s wonderful to have so many products on the market today for all of us with food allergies, sensitivities and intolerances but on the other hand we always have to be careful to insure that those foods are actually safe for us to eat.