The gluten free world has been shaken recently by the update that Costa coffee has swapped to a gluten containing oat milk as well as a soya milk with a may contain warning. Is this the end to a gluten free Costa coffee?
I reached out to Costa due to seeing some mixed messages on instagram and here’s the breakdown!
Firstly when I heard about the commotion I checked the Allergen Matrix available in store and online. It’s a table showcasing all their food and drink items and the 14 allergens, with the below code;
- YES in white font with a red background = allergen present
- C in black font with a yellow background = the allergen isn’t in the ingredients but present in the site of manufacturing /supply chain and therefore there is a risk of cross contamination
- N in black font with a green background = the allergen isn’t an ingredient
- Yes in black font with a blue background or no in black font with a orange background = suitable for a dietary requirement (vegan or vegetarian) with information from the product manufacturer. Doesn’t take into count in-store cross contamination from management/preparation methods
With that in mind the gluten free safe milks (with no cross contamination warning) are semi-skimmed/skimmed/whole milk and almond milk. The oat milk is a direct gluten containing milk with the soya and coconut being marked as cross contamination due to manufacturing site. So if you are diary and gluten free it would be advised to avoid the soya and coconut, but almond is safe. If you are just gluten free you can also have the cows milk.
Then there has been some talk about the milk steamer and cross contamination. Now I’ve never in the 4 years I’ve been diagnosed been warned about the milk steamer, not even in the session the NHS provides. I have, however, still researched into this and discovered that as long as the outside is cleaned and in between each use it is turned on and off, there are no risks of cross contamination. Costa have confirmed that all Costa shops will have designated milk jugs for each milk and that there are no cross contamination risks from the milk steamer due to the cleaning completed between each use.
All in all this means unless you pick a gluten containing milk (or a cross contamination risk milk) then as a gluten free individual you are safe to drink in Costa!
Thank you to Costa Coffee for the information and official statement in regards to the milk and steamer.
The Unlucky Coeliac xo