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False and Illegal gluten free advertising from Pizza Hut in Australia

Updated on May 21, 2012
Pizza Hut Australia Business Logo
Pizza Hut Australia Business Logo | Source

Getting on the Gluten Free Bandwagon

Within the last few years, many Australian pizza chains (both large and small) have been jumping onto the gluten free bandwagon from all corners. First, we started off with Pizza Capers, followed by Crust, then Domino's followed by Eagle Boys. About a year and a half later, it seems as though Pizza Hut just recently tried to get in on this latest so-called 'fad' diet. Took them a while, I must admit. :?

Of course, I am always interested in what the foodservice industry can come up with when it comes to gluten free offerings. Especially yummy, gooey pizza that we as coeliacs tend to miss out on a lot (not that we ever deserved to do so, it's just that we could be doing serious damage to ourselves if we actually do cheat on our diets (even once a year!!!)).

Pizza Hut used to be one of the places I'd go to every week with friends and family. Their affordable pizza prices and addictive menu items really are something that people like me unfortunately have had to do without for a long, long time (not to mention the social isolation that comes with it).

But with a new gluten free pizza offering, maybe this will change. Maybe these guys are genuine and actually mean gluten free when they say "GLUTEN FREE"!

Gluten Free pizza base Advertisement
Gluten Free pizza base Advertisement | Source

The Dreaded Pizza Hut Gluten Free Disclaimer

*While all care is taken, Pizza Hut Gluten Free bases are prepared in an environment that contain gluten and we cannot guarantee all Gluten Free bases will be 100% free from gluten. Most toppings contain Gluten."

Illegal Gluten Free Advertising Exposed

Honestly, folks... This is worse than Domino's, Eagle Boys, Crust or Pizza Capers!

While they don't use the ILLEGAL 'gluten friendly' term, they are certainly not winning any points with me with their disclaimer. Regardless of how I feel and how others think of it, what they are doing by using the 'gluten free' terminology and then adding a disclaimer shows total ignorance as to what gluten free labelling in Australia means.

Review of Australia's Gluten Free Legislation

In Australia, a food can only be labelled as 'gluten free' if it contains:

No detectable gluten

No oats

No cereals containing gluten that have been malted

What part of this legislation does Pizza Hut not understand?

Leave your views below. I have not tried their pizzas as I have coeliac disease and can't afford to risk them when they're so complacent about food safety. I think it absolutely STINKS that they're using us like this and I will be contacting the relevant authorities to have a review of this in the coming weeks.


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    • infonolan profile image

      infonolan 5 years ago from Australia

      You're absolutely right emakire. Unfortunately, processes like this can take time. I've done everything humanly possible to get the message to Pizza Hut, but they just haven't budged.

    • profile image

      emakire 5 years ago

      They should have their ok to operate in Autralia revoked then. If they can't follow the laws they shouldn't be in business.

    • infonolan profile image

      infonolan 5 years ago from Australia

      And the fact is, amalkire, they aren't! They haven't even had the courtesy to respond to my concerns. Thankfully the relevant authorities will be dealing with this matter.

    • profile image

      emalkire 5 years ago

      Just a note. Regardless of where the company headquarters are, they have to follow the laws in the country the store is physically in. So no it won't have anything to do with them being an American company. They should have legal representation in Australia who they confer with to find out what the laws are and then follow them. If they don't they aren't making smart business decussions.

    • infonolan profile image

      infonolan 5 years ago from Australia

      Vanesa, I agree entirely. It's a real shame that the health of those who are coeliac and gluten sensitive is put at risk like this and that we're being exposed to the public as a 'niche' 'target group'.

    • profile image

      Vanesa Hill 5 years ago

      Gluten free has become a "trend" for some who can eat gluten but think it will help them lose weight or become healthier by not eating it. I wonder if this is the crowd they are going after. Regardless, it is dangerous to have dishonest advertising. Don't they realize people's health is in jeopardy? Anything to make a buck.

    • infonolan profile image

      infonolan 5 years ago from Australia

      Heather thanks for commenting.

      The authorities have agreed that claiming gluten free and then adding a disclaimer is totally unacceptable. They agreed that Pizza Hut can't have it both ways and that if they wished to claim 'gluten free' status at all they would have to have procedures in place to make sure that if a random product sample were to be tested it would comply with the legislation.

      Thankfully, unlike most countries, the gluten free legislation does not differ between food manufacturing or restaurant/foodservice industries.

    • profile image

      Heather Jacobsen 5 years ago

      I wonder if this is because Pizza Hut is an American company? Of course, it shouldn't matter because if they are operating in Australia, then of course they should be operating under Australian law. I am happy to hear that you have such a legislation as you listed above. We don't have such legislation here, so anyone can claim gluten-free even when they aren't or don't adhere to safe kitchen practices. We are working on getting legislation, but we are not there yet. Which is why we often get gluten-free labels, with similar disclaimers. I would be very interested to here what happens when you contact the authorities. Please let me know! - Heather (aka @glutenfrefoodie)