Sept. 7, 2019

To Our Community:

We recently changed our recipe for our Country White Stay-Fresh bread to include gluten-free oat flour. Our aim with this change was to improve the taste and texture of this loaf based on feedback we received from our customers. As a result, our bakers went back to the drawing board and added Certified Gluten-Free and Purity Protocol sourced oat flour. We focused our energy so much on sourcing Certified Gluten-Free oat flour that we missed the mark in two important ways, and we wanted to take the time to address where we fell short, what we’ve learned, and our commitments to you moving forward.

First, we didn’t communicate this recipe change effectively to our community. We changed the ingredients on the packaging, however, we should have been much clearer about the recipe change to our current fans. Additionally, we did not consider the impact that gluten-free oats can have on some members of our community, and particularly those with Celiac Disease. We know that we really let some of you down and for that, we are sorry. Our team has learned a lot from this, and we are now more aware of the conversation surrounding oats and how we can do better in the future for our community.

We thought it would be helpful to provide some additional background regarding Gluten-Free Oats and how we are approaching this in the future.

Products with Oats

The three products in our lineup containing Certified Gluten-Free oat flour are:

  1. Honey Oat Stay-Fresh Bread
  2. Country White Stay-Fresh Bread
  3. Ancient Grain Stay-Fresh Bread

The remainder of our products are oat-free.

Certified Gluten-Free Oats

As a company that was founded by someone with Celiac, we take allergen safety very seriously and very personally. When we first decided to make a gluten-free honey oat bread, which launched in March 2018, one of our biggest concerns was ensuring that our oats were completely safe from gluten contamination. So, we researched suppliers extensively and opted to buy our oats from the company that created the Gluten-Free Oat Purity Protocol. They do not process or work with any gluten-containing ingredients and follow strict guidelines to ensure that they are clean throughout their entire supply chain from seed stock to farmers and equipment, facility, handling, and inspections. They govern their process very seriously and are third-party certified and inspected by the Celiac Sprue Association (CSA) and Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG). This work is important to us because we have a zero-gluten standard at Canyon Bakehouse. All of our products are made in a dedicated gluten-free facility, so no gluten ingredients ever enter our building. And, we test all of our ingredients for gluten both in-house and via an independent third-party lab. Our third party test results are “undetectable” or below 5 parts per million.

Oat Confusion

We recognize there is a lot of confusion out there about oats. To shed more light on the topic, we partnered with Erica Dermer of Celiac and the Beast to share more. Read her full post here.

Concerns with Glyphosate

Some fans have voiced concerns about reports of glyphosate in oats, so we wanted to address that as well.

We are particularly cautious about oats due to the greater risk for glyphosate exposure. Our approach is to work with our suppliers to make sure they have programs in place to prevent glyphosate from getting into the food supply and then follow up with spot testing to confirm it. The spot testing is done on finished products so that we cover ALL raw materials (oats, rice, even water).

The last round of testing is conducted by an outside 3rd party lab and the results all came back as “ND: Non Detected.” The reporting limit (or precision) for this particular test used at the 3rd party lab was 30 parts per billion.

Oat-free Options for You

If oats continue to be a concern for you or members of your household, we do have many options that do not contain oats. Our Mountain White and our Heritage Honey White are both white bread options that are oat-free and may be an ideal substitute for Country White.

What are we doing next

  • Our team is working to create more visibility regarding ingredients in our products that are potential allergens. We are updating our website in order to share this information with you. We understand dietary needs are unique, so it’s our goal to provide a line of sight to the products that you and your family can enjoy without worry.
  • Most importantly, we’re changing our internal process to have more scrutiny over the changes we make to our products. While we don’t intend to change the recipes of any of our classic bread or bagel products, our baking team is always reviewing consumer feedback and working hard to make sure our products provide the best taste and texture. Sometimes, that involves making small tweaks to the recipe. We now know that even the smallest of changes could have a much larger impact, which is why we’re committed to having a deeper level of research with our fans to understand the impact. The same level of scrutiny will go into ingredients we use for launching new items, ensuring that any potential allergens are clearly communicated.

We really appreciate that you have taken the time to reach out to us. We are always learning and adjusting to become better as a company, and your feedback is meaningful in shaping this. We work tirelessly as a team and a company to be the brand you can rely on and trust, and we take our relationship with our community very seriously. We know we have some work to do, and we hope that through our actions we can work to rebuild your trust.

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