Millennials' special diet needs are key to global gluten-free market strength. CC--Jack Lawrence

Celiac.com 08/11/2016 - In many ways, millennials are the special diet generation. To drive that point home, a new survey shows that a full one in five 18-34 year olds now have a food intolerance. That means 20% of millennials must either avoid certain foods, and/or eat special dietary foods to be healthy.

So, while one in three consumers are actively avoiding gluten right now, that number rises to 40% with millennials.

With the gluten-free market now worth GBP 210m, the Swedish bakers are calling upon chefs, caterers and operators to take a second look at their offerings. Andrew Ely, managing director at gluten-free cake maker Almondy, says that an in-house company survey confirms that more and more consumers are avoiding gluten, with three quarters of people having bought a gluten-free product in the last year.

Meanwhile, market researcher Mintel projects annual gluten-free market growth to increase another 50% by 2019. The research also found that over 25% of people would be more likely to order a gluten-free cake than a non-gluten-free cake, making celiac friendly desserts a solid bet for boosting profits and driving sales of hot drinks.

Companies like Almondy are perched to take full advantage of the market. A recent survey showed that nearly half of those with a gluten-intolerance had heard of the Swedish cake company, while a staggering 71% of millennials would buy Almondy's globally best-selling branded cakes, Daim Cake and Toblerone Cake.

Stay tuned for more gluten-free market research and food trends.

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