I met an acquaintance at Wegmans Supermarket who was recently diagnosed with Gluten Sensitivity. She was feeling frustrated with her food choices, so the D-Man and I took her for a gluten free shopping field trip. As we ambled down the aisles we talked about hidden ingredients, safe and unsafe foods, and the health benefits of real unprocessed foods. Wegmans like many grocery store chains, has their own store brand. Wegmans uses a labeling system to make shopping easier, and the letter “G” on the label denotes the item is gluten free (no wheat, barley, rye). When we reached the frozen section I realized that none of the potato items had the familiar “G” on the package. I reviewed the ingredients and while some contained gluten ingredients, others did not. I told my acquaintance it was best to steer clear of these products until I had received clarification from Wegmans Headquarters.
I called Wegmans the following morning and spoke with Denise from Consumer Affairs. She explained that none of the frozen potatoes have the familiar “G” on the label as their producer could no longer guarantee that they were not cross contaminated. Denise went on to explain that the following potato products are gluten free, and are processed in a separate facility that does not manufacture gluten.
Country Style Hash Browns, 30 oz
Crinkle Cut, 5 lb
Crinkle Cut-32 oz
Hash Browns 32 oz
Hash Browns O’Brien, 28 oz
Steak Cut, Grade A Thick Sliced Potatoes, 28 oz
Straight Cut-32 oz
Tater Puffs, 80 oz (Club Pack)
Tater Puffs-32 oz
I asked Denise why the “G” was no longer on the potato items that were gluten free, she explained that they, (corporate) did not want to cause any confusion for their customers. Wegmans does carry quite a few gluten free products and has a list that is available on-line http://www.wegmans.com/pdf/nutrition/GlutenFreeWegmansBrandProducts.pdf. You can also contact Wegmans Consumer Affairs Group with further questions regarding allergens contained in their store brand products: 1-800-WEG-MANS, extension 5920.
As always, I recommend you review the ingredients on the label each time you purchase a product since manufacturers change ingredients and suppliers frequently. So, for those of you who live in Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Virginia and Pennsylvania Wegmans still has gluten free frozen potatoes, although they are not being labeled as such.