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A note about cross contamination…

August 25, 2008

It has been 3 days and I am still suffering from the glutening I got at Luc’s Pizza in Longmont. This has been a pretty bad reaction, which has got me talking with other Celiacs, bakers, support group leaders, and friends, about cross contamination.

When we go somewhere like Chipotle, we ask them to change their gloves. When we go to Red Robin, we bring our own bread and ask if the fries are made in a dedicated fryer. What is the deal with pizza places? What is the difference between Luc’s and Beau Jo’s?

These are the only two places that I know of (and have eaten gluten free pizza). I have never been in either of their kitchens. But I have spoken with the employees at both places. Here is the difference; one place makes their own crust, the other does not.

Beau Jo’s gets their pizza crust from Deby’s in Denver (a DEDICATED gluten free facility). Beau Jo’s takes the frozen crust, puts it in a pan, puts on the toppings, and then cooks it (the pan is solid). Then they bring it to you in that pan. There is a chance of cross contamination (CC) through the toppings, and perhaps being touched, but that is about it.

Luc’s makes their own pizza crust in the same small facility that they make everything else. If you have ever made pizza then you know how messy it can be with all of that flour flying around. This is one reason why a dedicated facility is very important. And pizza shops are not making one pizza, like you would at home, but LOTS! That means lots of flour dusting the equipment, tools, bowls, spoons, rollers, everything. Then they bake it on a metal pan with holes on the bottom (you can tell if you look at the bottom of the pizza), this is another chance for CC to take place. Then the toppings. If they have recently made regular pizza, then topped your GF pizza, there is another chance for CC (not just from their hands, that is always a chance, but from the regular flour that may have been floating around).

Thses are just my thoughts. I have eaten at Beau Jo’s at least 10 times and never been sick, but one meal from Luc’s and I am stuck in the bathroom for days. There is something wrong here…..


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