Q. Are GF Oats gluten free?
A. Here in Australia, we are unable to call any product that contains oats gluten free. We do claim we are the oats you can trust because we ensure that each batch of oats are tested to be free from the gluten contamination from wheat, rye and barley.
Listen to Kylie explain this in more detail here.
Q. What does GF in your logo stand for?
A. GF is an acronym for our brand name 'Gloriously Free Oats'. The letters 'GF' can't be trademarked and are not associated in any way with the term 'gluten free'. Contrary to popular opinion, no food that is sold or promoted as gluten free has "GF" on the packaging, instead the full term 'gluten free' is used. Our logo is trademarked and complies with all Australian legal requirements since 2012.
Q. What is the difference between "Wheat free oats" and our oats?
A. The term 'wheat free' was born out of the need to disassociate products that don't contain wheat from those that do. However, it is important to note that the term 'wheat free' does NOT mean that the product is free from contamination from rye or barley. There are NO clarification standards or guidelines around this term in the Australian Food Standards. When you see the claim 'wheat free oats' do not assume that the product is free from contamination from rye or barley as many crops are grown beside crops that can cause gluten cross contamination.
Kylie discusses this in more detail here.
Q. What does the term 'uncontaminated oats mean'?
A. When Kylie introduced Australia to the the oats she had imported from her USA suppliers, she realised soon after that the oats could not be called 'gluten free oats'. So, in order to communicate to her customer base she coined the phrase 'Uncontaminated oats' which means that the oats are free from the gluten found in wheat, rye and barley. Studies show that most people with Coeliac disease 95% can tolerate uncontaminated oats, however, they do need to participate in a medically supervised oat study to ensure they do not react to the protein Avenin which is naturally forming in oats.
Q. So why aren’t GF Oats labelled gluten free?
A. Current Australian food labelling laws restrict us from making the claim that GF Oats are gluten free. At present, any product containing oats cannot be labelled 'gluten free' in Australia. The Australian Food Standard differs to the regulations in Europe and the USA, where oats can be labelled, and marketed, as 'gluten free'. In those countries, the protein Avenin, which is found in oats, is not considered to be a form of gluten.
GF Oats test every batch of oats with an independent testing facility in Australia to ensure they contain NIL contamination from the gluten found in wheat, rye & barley. This is why we are proud to call our oats "The Oats you can Trust".
Kylie explains this in more detail here.
Q. Aren’t oats naturally gluten free?
A. It is not uncommon, especially in Australia, for oats to be processed in a facility that also processes other grains that do contain gluten such as wheat, barley or rye. It is therefore possible for oats to be contaminated with gluten throughout the processing stage.
Cross contamination can also happen in the field when oats are grown in rotation with or side-by-side other grains. Farmers also cycle other gluten containing grains and then use the same machinery in their processing, storage or transportation. Cross contamination is very common in a lot of processing of grains in general, not just oats. In addition to oats, farmers also grow wheat, rye & barley and these grains are often processed in the same facilities.
Kylie discusses this in more detail here.
Because oats cannot be labelled as gluten free in Australia, some producers use terminology such as ‘wheat free’, ‘low gluten’, ‘uncontaminated’ or ‘pure’. These claims are not regulated and do not necessarily mean the product is suitable for someone with coeliac disease wanting to trial oats. For example, ‘wheat free’ may be used on a product where rye and/or barley contamination may still be an issue
Kylie addresses this question in more detail here.
Q. What are the results of Oat studies
A. There are now many studies that have been conducted using uncontaminated oats since they were certified to be called gluten free oats around the world. Even in Australia they are at the end of a longterm study on the oats and the value in the diet. Please refer to the below published studies for you knowledge and reference.
Excerpt: Assoc. Prof Jason Tye Din from WEHI - The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute , Chair of Coeliac Australia’s Medical Advisory Committee was involved with the international study.
“The findings of this project take us one step closer to allowing oats on the gluten-free menu for people with coeliac disease. We found that the type and amount of proteins in oats are actually more like rice, than wheat, rye and barley. However, this doesn’t answer the question ‘are oats safe for those with coeliac disease’… We know that oats can still trigger an immune response in some people with coeliac disease. It is important that feeding studies are conducted to understand what this means, and confirm that oats are not harmful with long-term intake. While this study gives us a lot of hope, safety data will be needed in order to confidently allow oats on the gluten free menu. Pleasingly, with the support of Coeliac Australia, my coeliac research group are undertaking these studies and we hope to complete this work this year. If oats can be safely introduced into the gluten free diet, this could have many benefits for people with coeliac disease, including adding in a highly nutritious, high fibre cereal and expanding food options.”
Published results of the study link here
CSIRO media release - Coeliac cereal - research shows oats could be the answer
Edith Cowan University
"The low rates of T-Cell Activation after a substantial oat challenge (100g per/day) suggest that does of oats commonly consumed are insufficient to cause clinical relapse and supports the safety of oats demonstrated in long term feeding studies." Only a small number of coeliac patients react to oats.
Excerpt: Avenin sensitivity and oats
Contamination is not the only problem, however. Some people with celiac disease will experience inflammation after eating oats, even if they follow a gluten-free diet.
This is because oats contain avenin, a protein that plays a role similar to gluten in wheat. In some people with celiac disease, Avenin activates the same immune cells that react to gluten. They may not notice a reaction at once, but in the long-term, damage can occur.
In 2014, a study showed that eating 100 grams (g)Trusted Source of oats a day for 3 days activated immune cells that targeted avenin. However, this only affected 8% of participants.
Q. Where are these oats grown?
A. For 14 years GK Gluten Free Foods has been supplying you with beautiful oats sourced from the USA. However, we are excited to advise that we have transitioned over to our Aussie farmers who are now able to supply us with pure GF uncontaminated oats of the same quality. These oats have passed the #bloodygoodoats test and we know you are going to LOVE them as much as you loved the oats from the USA. This hard decision to discontinue the supply of oats from the US has been initiated due to the increased cost of US oats, the deflated Aussie dollar, increased freight costs and supply chain issues. Our oats are now proudly grown by Avena Mills Australian Farmers in Western Australia.
Q. What does <3ppm or 5ppm mean?
A. The quantity of gluten in a product can be expressed scientifically as a certain number of parts of gluten contained in every million parts of the product. For example, a product that has no gluten detected at less than 5ppm means that the product has less than 0.0005% gluten and Food Standards Australia recognised that as 'nil gluten'. All products on the market that are labelled gluten-free in Australia will test to <3ppm or 5ppm which equates to ‘0’ or nil detected.
Q. What does Gluten Free mean?
A. Gluten-free means that gluten is not detected in a product, however, the levels of detection are different depending on where you live in the world. This difference in international standards has contributed to a lot of the confusion around the definition of ‘gluten-free’ foods.
In Australia & NZ we have quite strict standards and for a product to be labelled as ‘gluten-free’ this means that the product contains ‘no detectable gluten’. Current testing methods can only detect as low as 5ppm. In the USA and Europe, their standards are more flexible, where foods that contain up to 20ppm of gluten can be labelled as ‘gluten-free’.
You can read more about this in a blog article here.
Q. How do you test the oats to ensure they are free from the gluten found in wheat, rye and barley?
A. Great question. We send a sample of oats to an independent testing lab called Symbio where they test for ‘gluten’ contamination. They can measure gliadin, hordein, and secalin.
Q. What is the difference between Organic and Traditional Oats?
A. Great question, I did a blog on this topic. You can read it here…
Q. What does low-gluten mean?
A. Great question, I tackled this question in a blog recently. You can read it here…
Q. Are GF Oats sprayed with chemicals?
A. GF Oats crops are not exposed to crop topping with chemicals at the farm level. Our Certified Organic range is not subject to any chemical exposure. Read more here.
Q. What are the benefits of buying organic oats?
A. If you are wondering why you should consider changing your family’s diet to one that incorporates organic products, there are many independent studies that show the benefits of choosing organic foods where you can. These benefits include more nutritional value, better flavour, and reducing your exposure to chemicals and pesticides. You can read more about the benefits of buying organic oats on our recent blog article here.
Q. What are the Australian Food Standards?
A. Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) develops standards that regulate the use of ingredients and how products are labelled. The FSANZ Code outlines that oats and products containing oats are not permitted in the food category labelled 'gluten-free'. We discuss this in more detail in a blog article which you can read here.
Q. Why do GF Oats cost so much?
A. We understand that the price of our oats is high in comparison to mainstream oats. Unfortunately, to be able to ensure that these oats are free from any gluten contamination we follow very strict compliance and protocols according to the International Global Oats Protocol. This is very costly for our farmers so the raw commodity costs a lot more than mainstream oats where they can process in facilities that process all grains.
When it comes to good health, GF Oats strives to go the extra mile. Our gluten-sensitive customers trust us to make great tasting snacks and cereals that won’t cause flares or digestive problems. We make all our products with Purity Protocol oats grown and processed in dedicated facilities in Australia, guaranteed to be free of wheat, barley, and rye. A farm-to-table process, it identifies and eliminates points where contamination could have occurred.
We offer a variety of ways you can save money on our Oats.
- 20% subscription which can be extended within 3 dispatch cycles and cancelled after that.
- Utilise the various Deals of the Week (Weekly newsletter)
- Use a wide variety of discount codes you can use in our store
- Buy in bulk
- Join our Loyalty Program
- For every sale you are in the running to win a FREE HOLIDAY
Q. What is the Global Oats Purity Protocol?
A. In 2017, farmers, processors, and agencies like the Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG), and the Gluten-Free Certification Organization (GFCO) in the USA, set out to create guidelines to define Purity Protocol. A rigorous process, it embraces everything from seed purity, standards for crop rotation, planting and harvesting equipment, milling facilities, third-party testing, and safe shipping. Industry benchmarks were essential to winning consumer confidence. A unique traceability model connects products to individual growers. Purity Protocol oats surpass Health Canada and FDA standards for contamination by 50 to 75 percent. Read more here.
Q. Are our oats GMO?
A. 100% no our oat seed is definitely not genetically modified. We have spent many years stock piling our own seed stock so we do not have to purchase seed from commercial stock to ensure that the oats are uncontaminated from seed to plate.
Q. What is your packaging program?
A. We are continuing to work on moving all our packaging to sustainable and recyclable options. We work with a private company who is assisting us with this. Please read more about our progress here.
Q. How do you cook GF Oats?
A. There are a lot of variations on how to cook oats. Here is a surefire stove and microwave version that will get you started. Cooking oats.
Q. Where are your oats sourced from?
A. For 13 years we sourced our oats from the US as we worked with Australian farmers to supply commercial quantities. In 2022 we transitioned solely over to our Australian farmers. Read our story here.
Q. Where is the Research Study on Oats?
“The findings of this project take us one step closer to allowing oats on the gluten-free menu for people with coeliac disease. We found that the type and amount of proteins in oats are actually more like rice, than wheat, rye and barley. However, this doesn’t answer the question ‘are oats safe for those
with coeliac disease’… We know that oats can still trigger an immune response in some people with coeliac disease. It is important that feeding studies are conducted to understand what this means, and confirm that oats are not harmful with long-term intake. While this study gives us a lot of hope, safety data will be needed in order to confidently allow oats on the gluten free menu. Pleasingly, with the support of Coeliac Australia, my coeliac research group are undertaking these studies and we hope to complete this work this year. If oats can be safely introduced into the gluten free diet, this could have many benefits for people with coeliac disease, including adding in a highly nutritious, high fibre cereal and expanding food options.”