However, it gets trickier when you start to consider “juice drinks,” which contain less than 100% juice. These products are more processed (which increases the risks for gluten cross-contamination), and may even include gluten-containing ingredients such as barley, sometimes used as a sweetener. Unfortunately, food labeling laws do not require manufacturers to disclose barley or barley-based ingredients such as malt. Therefore, it’s possible for manufacturers to “hide” barley under catch-all terms such as “natural flavorings.” Some manufacturers voluntarily disclose barley ingredients by listing them as “natural flavorings (barley malt)” on their labels.
Therefore, even though most fruit drinks are safe, you do need to be careful when choosing a fruit juice-based beverage. Here’s the list of commonly available juice products in the United States, and whether they’re considered gluten-free or not:
- Bolthouse Farms – Click here to see a list of the Bolthouse Farms juices that are gluten-free – http://bolthouse.com/products/sortby/glutenfree
- Capri Sun – These juices and juice concentrates, mainly aimed at kids, come from a Kraft subsidiary, and Kraft has a stated policy of always specifying any gluten sources on its labels.
- Dole. Dole makes numerous canned and chilled juices, plus frozen juice concentrates. According to the company, none of its juices contains gluten.
- Lakewood Juices – These organic and premium 100% fruit juices are produced and bottled in a gluten-free facility, according to the company.
- Minute Maid – Minute Maid, which includes various 100% fruit juices plus several lemonades and juice drinks, is made by the Coca-Cola Co. According to Coke’s gluten-free list, all 100% juice products are gluten-free.
- Ocean Spray – Ocean Spray, which makes a reliably gluten-free cranberry sauce, also makes a wide variety of cranberry-flavored and other fruit-flavored beverages. According to Ocean Spray’s frequently asked questions, Ocean Spray has queried its ingredient suppliers and determined that its beverages and sauces are free from gluten.
- RAAW Juice – The company states that all their 100% juices are gluten-free.
- Sambazon – The Sambozan website says that all their juices are gluten-free.
- Simply Orange – Pure juices from Simply Orange (another Coca-Cola subsidiary) are considered gluten-free in the U.S., as are the flavors Simply Orange Juice Medium Pulp with Calcium, Simply Orange with Mango, Simply Orange with Pineapple, Simply Apple, Simply Grapefruit, Simply Lemonade, Simply Limeade, and Simply Lemonade with Raspberry.
- Tropicana – Tropicana says that all its products, “including Trop 50, are naturally gluten-free.”
- V8 – Known for its trademark tomato-based vegetable juice, V8 actually makes numerous different juices, including pure fruit juices and blends. The company states that none of its products contain gluten.
- Welch’s juices – This grape-centric company makes 100% fruit juices, fruit fizz, sparkling beverages and juice cocktail blends. According to Welch’s gluten statement, the only Welch products that contain gluten (in the form of wheat) are Welch’s Filled Licorice.
Be aware that this list applies only to products purchased in the U.S. Companies can use different formulas and different facilities to produce products in other countries. When in doubt about a particular product’s gluten status, contact the manufacturer directly.
To learn more about 100% Juices along with a chart on Key Nutrients in Fruit and a tip sheet on 15 Ways to Enjoy More Fruit, purchase the May issue of SUPERMARKET SAVVY Newsletter.
Check out these Gluten-Free resources: