Succeeding in the Gluten-Free Market
Reports show that all gluten-free food segments increased in the past year with snacks increasing the most. Gluten-free snacks increased 163% from 2012-14, reaching sales of $2.8 billion according to Mintel. Sales increases were mainly due to a 456% increase in potato chip sales.
The meats/meat alternatives segment is the second-largest gluten-free food segment in terms of sales, reaching $1.6 billion in 2014, a 14% increase from 2012-14. The bread products and cereals segment saw gains of 43% during that same time period and is set to reach $1.3 billion this year. Bread and cereal are ripe for gluten-free growth, Mintel said, with only 1% of the overall segment termed gluten-free. Typically Gluten-Free products tend to have short shelf life and in most cases do not have good texture. Microencapsulation/encapsulation is a technology that can be leveraged to increase shelf life and texture of Gluten-Free bakery products especially those in the frozen food category. The coatings that are used are Gluten-Free and there is a rich array of Gluten-Free fruit acids and lactic acid shelf life extenders which when coated will help overcome pre-reactions, deliver consistent and optimum leavening, extend shelf life and deliver an all-natural taste and texture with good consumer appeal.
The same encapsulation technology that has been used to overcome the cardboard consistency once characteristic of rising crust pizza, refrigerated pizza and to extend shelf life of frozen and refrigerated dough as well as frozen biscuit dough, scoop and bake frozen muffins and biscuits stand as an effective tool to deliver Gluten-Free products with better texture and longer shelf life.