We are getting more and more demand for gluten free beer. Not only from people who are allergic to gluten, but also from customers who are more conscious of what they (don't) eat and drink. Time for us to delve into the world of gluten and gluten-free beers.
What exactly is gluten?
The Nutrition Center has the answer to that question: "Gluten is a mixture of proteins that occurs naturally in certain grains, such as wheat." More specifically, they are the proteins gliadins and glutenins. These serve as reserve food for the plants and are water-soluble. Gluten is found in wheat, spelt, rye and barley. Gluten is therefore found in bread, pizza and pastries. But it's also found in pasta, soups, sauces, sweets, ice cream and... beer.
How can it bother you? There are people who are allergic to gluten. They then lead to celiac disease and should actually not eat or drink gluten. There are also people who do not have celiac disease but are still sensitive to gluten. Why is it in (non-alcoholic) beer? Most beers are made from barley or wheat, which automatically means there is gluten in the beer. There is no difference between beer with or without alcohol.
How is gluten-free (alcohol-free) beer made? This is possible by using oats or the ancient grain teff instead of the normal grain when brewing beer. It originally contains no gluten. But more commonly, the gluten is removed from a normally brewed beer. The beer is then "deglutanized". The product then contains less than 20 ppm gluten (= 20 mg/kg product) gluten in the product and can therefore bear the official Crossed Grain quality mark. You can find more information on this at the the National Celiac Association (NCA). Which gluten-free non-alcoholic beer is there? We have a range of gluten free alcohol free beers in our shop. You can find the complete overview here. We carefully check whether a beer is gluten-free before placing it in this category. If you come across gluten-free non-alcoholic beers yourself, please let us know.