Mintel International estimates the market for gluten-free foods has grown 63% during 2012-14, and the company estimates it will achieve $8.8 billion in sales in 2014. All gluten-free food segments increased in the past year, although snacks increased the most — rising 163% from 2012-14 and reaching sales of $2.8 billion.
Normally, such data would be bad news for the baking and snack industries, but consider this: Sales increases in snacks were mainly due to a 456% increase in potato chip sales. OK. Isn’t that like making a claim that bananas are cholesterol-free and apples contain no trans fats? Moreover, only 1% of all cereal and bread products are gluten-free.
Maybe it’s just a coincidence, but isn’t that the same percentage of the population that suffers from celiac disease?The good news is that there are a lot more options — and better-tasting ones as well — for those who are gluten intolerant. It’s unfortunate that some companies are relying on some of the same old marketing gimmicks to sell their products.