Blog: Katy Askewjust-food visits the 2014 Free-From Expo

Katy Askew | 4 June 2014

The free-from sector is witnessing strong growth in developed markets from Europe to the US and beyond.

A growing awareness of allergies and intolerances has widened the consumer base now looking at free-from alternatives. Driven by health and wellness concerns, the march of the free-from sector has also been supported by celebrity diet trends and exponents of free-from in sports nutrition.

The rapidly expanding gluten-free area is one that has caught the attention of many food manufacturers, responding to heightened demand from coeliacs and lifestyle consumers. Mainstream brands such as Warburtons and Heinz - spanning categories from baked goods to sauces and condiments - have jumped on the gluten-free bandwagon.

Elsewhere, GM-free is a message that is becoming more important, particularly in the politically charged atmosphere of the US. As the labelling war wages stateside, a GM-free message has become one that manufacturers can leverage to build consumer trust. Both Post Holdings and General Mills, for instance, have added GMO-free labelling to their mainstream cereal brands.

It does not end there - meat-free, dairy-free, nut-free, wheat-free, sugar-free. The list goes on.

Free-from is gradually moving out of the margins. Once the preserve of health food and specialty shops, it now demands a place in conventional supermarkets and convenience stores. However, much of the impetus for free-from production and innovation can be found with SMEs and up-and-coming firms that specialise in a particular area.

just-food is at this year's Free-From Expo in Brussels on 3/4 June to bring you updates of the latest free-from trends emerging. We will bring you news and views from the two day event, trend-spotting as your eyes and ears on the ground in this innovative sector.

 

BLOG

Fyffes and Ethical Trading Initiative under scrutiny

Fyffes, the global produce supplier, is in the spotlight over union claims of worker abuse on plantations in Central America....

BLOG

Outgoing Waitrose chief Mark Price gets UK government role

Mark Price, the outgoing managing director of UK grocer Waitrose, has been named the country's new trade minister....

BLOG

The problem with the word 'natural' in the US

Last autumn, a US trade group said it would look to develop a voluntary regulatory compliance and certification programme for the term 'natural', with an eye on releasing the standard in the first hal...

just-food homepage



Forgot your password?