Fresh dry gluten free pasta labeling
Italy is the leading producer and first exporter of pasta and it is also its main consumer, given that an Italian eats an average of 27 kg of pasta per year, while other Europeans eat 6 kg.
There are different types of pasta, but the first distinction to be made is that between dry pasta and fresh pasta, and the label changes between them. Let’s see the particularities.
Mandatory information on pasta labeling
The mandatory information that must be present on the dry pasta label are:
- producer and / or packer
- batch number
- the nutritional table
- minimum storage term, which can only be indicated with the month and year and not with a precise date, since it is a product that can be kept for more than 18 months.
Fresh pasta ingredients, dry pasta and gluten-free pasta
As for the ingredients, for durum wheat semolina pasta, usually the only other ingredient is water and by law it cannot contain additives and soft wheat flour is present only in products intended for export. Usually only durum wheat or durum wheat semolina or durum wheat semolina is used, obtained by grinding the semolina and therefore finer.Organic wholemeal pasta is obtained by drawing, rolling and drying dough prepared exclusively with whole durum wheat semolina and water.
Instead, gluten-free pasta is made with corn and rice flours and in this case chemical additives are allowed, in particular E471, mono and diglycerides of fatty acids and emulsifiers. Another type of pasta is that of Khorasan wheat whose commercial and best known name is Kamut, which is a trademark registered by an American company in Montana of a farmer named Bob Quinn.
In reality this flour is neither more digestible nor healthier than durum wheat semolina, from a nutritional point of view it is identical. As for the functional paste against cholesterol, very useful in sports, it is added with beta-glucans, which are found in the bran of barley and oat grains. This indication must be present on the label.
For fresh egg pasta, loose or packaged, the quantity of eggs or egg product must be at least 20%. The law dictates that the total weight of the egg in pasta bearing this denomination must not be less than 200 g for each kilogram of semolina.
On the label there must be the sales name “Egg pasta” and the list of ingredients, then the type of flour, the percentage of eggs or egg product, the specification of the presence of gluten and the expiry date.
The sales name must also be indicated on the packaging of stuffed pasta, which may contain the name of the main ingredient (for example “tortellini with ricotta and spinach”) and the percentage of the individual ingredients must be specified in the list of ingredients.
Indications on the labeling of pasta
Among the other indications that may be present on the label are any recommendations for intolerant people, which are in particular:
- wording on particular types of substances used in the plant where the meat is produced and packaged (eg “Produced in a plant that uses nuts)
- the methods of storage (eg. “Store in the fridge after opening and use within two days”)
- the specification “packaged in” modified atmosphere “which means that shelf life has been aided with the use of authorized gases.