Blog: just-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.
That politicians are selective with the truth is pretty much a given. But it did make this pundit chuckle to hear UK Chancellor George Osborne describe United Biscuits as a "great British company"... ...
Researchers at US-based The NPD Group have expressed optimism in the prospects for the foodservice sector after analysing sales data in 11 markets this summer....
Nestle had some reason for cheer this week when it was confirmed that Maggi noodles should be back on Indian shelves this month....
Speculation Bright Food is planning to float its Australian asset, the distributor Manassen Foods, has resurfaced, with a report the Chinese giant has hired banking advisers to line up a listing next ...
- How Danone aims to meet its 2020 objectives
- Why Mars rice plan not just crop-ticking exercise
- Greencore's food-to-go focus paying dividends
- Interview: Ritter sees growth potential in US, EU
- ConAgra Foods split - what could happen next?
- Pinnacle to buy Boulder Brands in $975m deal
- Genius Foods buys UK gluten-free firm Chapel Foods
- Maple Leaf Foods to cut over 400 jobs
- Nestle combats Thai seafood supply forced labour
- Hovis plans cuts amid anxiety over UK bread demand