All malt, no gluten

Finnish brewery says it has a choice for those with celiac disease

A Finnish brewery has announced it made the made the world’s first malt beer that does not contain gluten. Millions around the world cannot drink beer because they are allergic to gluten.

The Laitilan Brewery issued a press release stating, “Until recently, real beers have been prohibited from celiac (gluten-intolerant) patients’ diet … Today they are allowed to enjoy the full-malt Kukko Pils beer from Laitilan brewery.” the company said in a statement.

It calls Kukko Pils “the world’s first ever full-malt beer brand to receive the international gluten-free product trademark.” Other breweries have produced Gluten-free beers using spelt as a substitute for barley.

Gluten intolerance, or celiac disease, is a chronic nutritional disturbance caused by the inability to metabolize gluten, which is found in all wheat, rye, barley and oat products.

Obtaining the gluten-free product trademark “opens up new sales channels abroad,” Laitilan managing director Rami Aarikka said in the statement, pointing out that as many as one percent of Europeans and Americans suffer from celiac disease.


  1. RobertFromOz says

    I have a number of problems with this so called gluten free beer.

    First, the test they to detect gluten, the ELISA test, is known to give false negatives for anything made from barley malt, and where enzymes have been used to simplfy proteins. So the test is not reliable for testing beer.

    This product can not be labelled as gluten free in Austalia, as here anything made from a malted gluten containing grain, is excluded for this very reason.

    Second, the allowable levels of gluten in food and drink labelled as gluten free are much higher in Europe than in countries such as Australia.

    There are now a number of beers made from malted and unmalted gluten free grains throughout the world, and more under development.

    These beers are getting better, and as experience of working with these grains grows, they will improve much more.

    In the World Beer Cup, there is now a category for gluten free beer (made from gluten free grains), so this could be interesting.

  2. dick murton says

    Hmm Having recently become aware of being intolerant to wheat, barley, oats, amongst other foods, I have my suspicion that merely having destroyed the gluten, even supposing they have managed to denature 100 %, will not be sufficient, certainly not in every case.

    So I for one would be somewhat suspicious of it being suitable for me at least. Sorghum beers, here I come !!

    A major problem is simply ensuring that there is no cross contamination from the other beers they undoubtedly brew, which is one reason I have fought shy of some microbrewers products, although perhaps these are just the guys who CAN produce such beers if they use fresh yeast each time – grown from a culture slope of course.

    For anyone who doesn’t realise how sensitive people can be, to my horror, I reacted to the vegetable extract I was drinking instead of soups when I was last sailing overnight. It turned out this has maltodextrins to add body and flavour – and I reacted to a couple of teaspoons of the extract. Or perhaps it was something else – not necessarily the gluten. So please, if you claim gluten free – it really does need to be