START SAFE, STAY SAFE
Processing of Avena Foods’ Purity protocol oats is a ‘start safe, stay safe’ approach where resources are focused on preventing contamination from the field to the food ingredient. Key elements include:
- Using pure Pedigreed Seeds
- Growing Oats in fields not rotated with gluten containing grains
- Inspection of fields for rogue gluten-grains
- Using a dedicated gluten-free milling facility and equipment with a strong sanitation program
- Visually inspecting and analytical testing of the oats
- Controlling and inspecting transportation throughout the chain
PURITY FROM FARM TO TABLE
Avena Foods has strong relationships with their growers. They negotiate mutually beneficial contracts that guarantee the continued production of Purity Protocol oats and oat ingredients.
Avena Growers plant pedigreed oat seed only after at least three years of growing non-gluten containing crops in their rotation. The seed is pure, ‘true to type’ and has been approved and provided through Avena Foods. The fields used to grow Purity Protocol seed also require a three-meter isolation strip between either gluten containing or non-gluten containing crops.
Throughout the growing season, the fields are inspected to assess cross-contamination risks by both in-house field inspectors and trusted 3rd party inspectors (Canadian Food Inspection Agency accredited).
Prior to delivery of the harvested oats to the dedicated gluten-free milling facility in Regina, 2kg precleaned samples are evaluated by in-house quality assurance staff, as well as being tested for purity by an external lab.
Dedicated and validated gluten-free facility
The Avena Foods Regina Purity Protocol milling facility is FSSC 22:000 certified. It is also certified by the Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG) of North America. GIG is verified and validated by the Gluten-Free Certification Organization (GFCO).
Before accepting any oats into the Avena Foods ‘Purity Protocol’ Regina facility, trained in-house grain receivers visually inspect and test the oats for gluten contamination and other quality parameters. Each crop year, the first four loads delivered by each individual grower are treated as ‘high risk’, where a larger 4kg sample is collected and inspected prior to acceptance. After four successful load inspections, the grower is designated as ‘low risk’ for that crop year and a smaller sample size is collected and inspected.
The regular cleaning and inspection of the gluten-free dedicated milling equipment ensures the management of any contamination risks, and the production of allergen-free pure oat ingredients.
After milling, each lot of finished goods is tested using R5-ELISA, the most recognized, sensitive and accurate gluten test available on the market.
Avena’s logistics partners are carefully selected. They must adhere to strict shipping and delivery requirements with all transport vehicles being thoroughly cleaned prior to inspection at the Regina facility.
Delivery trucks are sealed and secured when leaving the Purity Protocol facility. This is just one more of the steps that ensures customers receive pure, safe, superior-quality certified ‘Purity Protocol’ gluten-free oats.