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Gluten Free Guerrillas
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wheat glucose syrup

Waitrose are declaring there is wheat in glucose syrup. I have never seen this before. And I thought there was denial by some that glucose syrup was okay. Eating products with glucose syrup was one of my symptoms but it was always dismissed as being problematic.


13 Replies

Hi Urbangirl, now this is one of my favourite subjects, the FSA have a voluntary labelling of wheat derivatives and Waitrose is one of the good guys as they also list maltodextrin dextrose etc.

According to the EFSA glucose syrup from wheat has up to 4 ppm. So it is well within codex. Now here's the maths: 1ppm is 1mg per 1Kg and 1mg of sucrose has 3280000000000000000 molecules. This is 3.28 to the power of 18. So on a molecular level even 1ppm has trillions of gluten molecules. Obviosly there will be a lot less than Img of glucose syrup in a small portion but still lots of gluten molecules. Also please bear in mind that strong bread flour has around 12.5% gluten so on one level it is neglible compared to that.

Another thing to bear in mind is that artificial sugars are also a common trigger for IBS.


Jerry I have never seen anything about wheat being in glucose sugar so I am so pleased at the acknowledgement on the label regardless of the maths! I know that not all glucose syrup is derived from wheat so this can help those of us that have problems eating products that contain this. I am surprised how many products do contain glucose syrup and mostly I eat stuff from scratch. However, my friends would innocently use stuff they consider gluten free, such as stock cubes which contains glucose syrup, to make dinner for me. Also it used in restaurants for soup etc. I see Waitrose declaration on labelling as a very positive move. Hope others follow the example and we get a reduction or shift in ingredients used for glucose syrup.


You want confirmation in writing please see page 33 annex 3 below:

Which shows that glucose syrup can be derived from wheat and barley.




The ingredients listed in Schedule AA1 (as amended by the 2008 Regulations, the 2009 Regulations in Scotland and the 2011 Regulations) are as follows:

Cereals containing gluten (i.e. wheat, rye, barley, oats, spelt, kamut or their hybridised strains), except:

(a) wheat-based glucose syrups including dextrose*;

(b) wheat-based maltodextrins*;

(c) glucose syrups based on barley;

(d) cereals used for making distillates or ethyl alcohol of agricultural origin for spirit drinks and other alcoholic beverages.

The maths is to help those who do not understand why they are made ill by food exempt from food labelling and why we should have wheat/gluten derivatives clearly labelled. And I do get a bit carried away sometimes...


I don't how long Waitrose have been labelling wheat is in glucose syrup but other companies are not. On occasions when I have succumbed and eaten a fruit pastille or two, I have had a reaction, likewise with chocolates at Christmas and I have a learnt what to avoid. But occasionally there has been no reaction - is this because there was no wheat in these products?

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The FSA state that wheat/grain derivatives do not have to be labelled so that manufacturers can change the source of the derivative without having to change the label.

The amount of gluten found in wheat derivatives was listed on the EFSA site but disappeared but I had already taken a screenshot

I believe that Waitrose have been labelling wheat derivatives for a few years now, I first saw it with maltodextrin 3 or 4 years ago.

I think this shows that we the consumer should be aware of what we are really eating hence yours and others confusion.

I have also seen maltodextrin from tapioca on some independent food co's labels.

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Absolutely Jerry! But I have never seen this labelling before, maybe I didn't check properly because I don't eat sweets/chocolates very often, but it is so helpful!


Hi Urbangirl and I'm sorry as I feel that I just quoted facts when you were pleased because of this sentence

''And I thought there was denial by some that glucose syrup was okay. ''

I think you will find that glucose syrup is still listed as an OK additive in the same category as rice malt and corn syrup by UK coeliac experts.

I agree 100% that labelling like this is a big bonus for us so again I'm sorry if I frustrated you with my response.

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Morning Jerry! Yep I accept that some people are not affected by glucose syrup, but equally important some are and are confused why they keep getting symptoms when sticking to a gluten free diet. There doesn't seem to be any recognition of this and I have been told it is safe even though eating some products with glucose syrup has made me ill. I am surprised that responsible agencies don't err on the side of caution. Indeed labelling is critical! Have a good day!

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I discovered this just last week. I'm wheat allergic and lactose intolerant with supposed IBS which I believe is just unidentified allergy or food sneaking in that's not been picked up. I bought the gluten and dairy free rocky road and was symptomatic within 15 mins so I knew I had wheat. Checked the label and was shocked in my research about glucose syrup. It probably answers some of my IBS mystery. I'm pleased Waitrose label so well though or I might never have known.

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I knew that anything that says it contains glucose or corn syrup may be cut with wheat based sources. As such, the only fizzy drink I can drink without an upset tummy is pepsi (though there are those who can't drink even this). But I don't drink very often, prefer to stick to water for safer sake, or home made herbal teas.


So are we now saying that even gluten free biscuits and cakes containing glucose syrup should be eaten with caution? I am sensitive to very tiny traces and need, so I don’t end up back in hospital, to eliminate everything


Caroline the problem is that not all glucose syrup contains wheat. I understand that the proportion wheat contained in glucose syrup is considered okay in this country. I further understand that some people can tolerate this amount but I can't. In fact one of the first signs that I could not eat gluten was the reaction after eating wine gums! I tend to avoid anything with glucose syrup. I am also very sensitive to tiny traces and don't want to get ill. I do find it difficult when friends go out of their way to get me GF food but buy ready made stuff which invariably contains glucose syrup.


I think I’m going to follow your lead on this as I too am incredibly sensitive. Went to see my doc today and have asked to be referred to the gluten ataxia centre in Sheffield.


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