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Celiac.com 04/14/2016 - Driven partly by a perception among consumers that gluten-free foods are healthier than their non-gluten-free counterparts, the global gluten-free packaged food market is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of approximately 6% between 2015 and 2019, according to a recent market report from Technavio. In addition to health and wellness, Technavio identifies demand from millennials and increased marketing activities as prime emerging trends driving the gluten-free market. Once seen as medical products for gluten intolerant people gluten-free products have evolved into "a lifestyle choice across all customer segments," says Brijesh Kumar Choubey, a lead food industry analyst at Technavio. Many consumers associate gluten-free foods with better energy energy levels, and with weight loss. Technavio cites a 2013 market survey conducted by Monash University that revealed nearly 80% people buying gluten-free products report perceived health benefits as the main reason. Just five to ten years ago, buyers of gluten-free foods were likely to be older. Today, younger consumers, specifically 32% of millennials, and 38% of Generation Z, said they would pay higher prices for gluten-free products. Bakery products, cookies and snacks are the top gluten-free foods among this consumer group, said Technavio. Driven by growing demand, and by new product development, the bakery segment leads the gluten-free packaged food market with 64% market share in 2014. Technavio predicts the segment will outpace the rest of the market through the end of 2019, growing at a rate of about 7%. Increased marketing activities from big and small manufacturers alike is the last key driver Technavio cites as a driver for gluten-free packaged food demand. An example is Heinz, which in 2014 launched a social media campaign for its gluten-free pasta and sauces, Technavio said. Source: Foodbusinessnews.net
We have all been warned about tricksy stunts included in fine print. We all know someone who has been duped by a some technical legal speak. But what about the in your face statements that are just plain misleading? When it comes to gluten free statements, errors whether accidental or intentional can be harmful. The sad thing is that as more companies want a piece of the gluten-free pie, not all companies take due diligence in understanding gluten-free. Just yesterday I experienced this not once but twice!! My friend brought over a box of meatballs that said in big letters on the front GLUTEN FREE…luckily I read the back label. The ingredient list for the meatballs was gluten-free, but the separate mango sauce ingredients clearly identified wheat as an ingredient. What if she had not brought the box? What if I had not double checked and just believed the marketing? How could this product be labeled gluten-free if everything in the box was not actually gluten free? This is poor and dangerous marketing. Later I was shopping online for a gift basket and "Oh joy!" the company had a link to their gluten-free products. Unfortunately, the statements made on their webpage were clearly done by someone who had a limited understanding of celiac needs. I was very angered, not because it misled me, but these kind of errors mislead the well-meaning friends and family who sometimes don't quite "get the gluten thing". Following is my letter to the company: I am disturbed by what you have written about your gluten-free offerings. Your description gives me ZERO confidence that your products are actually gluten free. I and two of my daughters are Celiacs. Your ignorance and misinformation in your write-up distinctly says you do not understand gluten free. First of all, you say that your funnel cakes are 100% celiac-free…WHAT? They are either "Celiac-Safe" or "Gluten-Free". Then you go on to say that the lucky gift recipient doesn't HAVE to be gluten-intolerant…WHAT? Like we can decide to just not be gluten sensitive. Its an autoimmune disease! Would you advise other autoimmune sufferers similar advice…juvenile arthritis-you don't have to avoid sugar… MS-you can control your muscles if you choose... rheumatoid arthritis-you can master the swelling and disfiguration of your joints...alopecia-you don't have to be bald… If you think these statements sound ridiculous then think what you are saying to celiacs and especially our friends or family who may want to purchase a well meaning gift but are misadvised by your marketing rhetoric. Your statements leave me with three varying degrees of thought: #1 your company is insensitive, (or worse yet) #2 your company is ignorant (or worst case of all) #3 your company is deliberately negligent. It would be great to get a response from your company and even better if your company fixes the egregious error on its webpage. I hope that those who continue to speak up can make a difference for the entire gluten-free community. We have already seen strides in laws and labeling, but I advise everyone to always read the fine print…our bodies do!
Celiac.com 10/01/2012 - As the gluten-free market is exploding, food manufacturers are taking note. More and more food companies are recognizing the need to inform and serve the segment of the market that needs or wants gluten-free products. From gluten-free flours to gluten-free restaurant menus, the prevalence of these products is only expanding—and that means good things for the gluten-free community. The Rise of Gluten-Free Merchandising In the United States alone, sales of gluten-free food and beverages hit $2.64 billion in 2010, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 30% over the 2006-2010 period, according to Packaged Facts. A report by the Frost & Sullivan consulting firm estimates retail sales of packaged foods free of the protein are approaching $2 billion a year in the U.S. What's more, sales are expected to continue growing—even exceeding $5 billion by the year 2015. The growth of gluten-free parallels the growth of celiac disease, a gluten intolerance that has doubled in case numbers every 15 years since 1974, according to University of Maryland study. With an increasing number of Americans diagnosed with Celiac, not to mention many more non-diagnosed individuals finding health benefits from avoiding gluten, the market has a ready audience. Brands Already Active in the Gluten-Free Market Because gluten-free products require specialty flours and premium ingredients that command higher prices, they're typically more expensive than their traditional counterparts. Yet despite that fact, they're selling fast, which is exactly why so many companies and brands are jumping in. Gluten-free sales are soaring at Cub Foods grocery stores, according to a report from Minnesota Public Radio. The chain has a website that helps shoppers create shopping lists of items that don't contain gluten, and almost every Cub now has a section dedicated to the category. Food-manufacturing giant General Mills, the company behind Cheerios and Betty Crocker, now offers hundreds of products with the gluten-free label. Kellogg has gluten-free Rice Krispies. Beer manufacturer Anheuser-Busch sells Redbridge, a gluten-free beer. There's a long list of gluten-free menu options at P.F. Chang's, a wide variety of gluten-free options at specialty grocers like Whole Foods Market (a grocery that has more than doubled its gluten-free products in the last five years) and designated sections of gluten-free products at most major supermarkets, including Kroger, Publix and Wal-Mart. The Problem for the Celiac Community Given that there's money to be made in the gluten-free marketplace as the idea grows in popularity among celebrities, athletes, etc., it's no surprise to see so many different brands jumping on board. The problem, however, is not that companies are offering gluten-free products—it's that the products labeled "gluten-free," are often cross-contaminated in production, making them still seriously unsafe for celiac patients. For patients diagnosed with celiac disease, going gluten-free is more than a trend—it's a necessity. One example of this struggle is Domino's gluten-free pizza crust, launched earlier this year, which the company itself admits it "cannot guarantee … will be completely free from gluten." For someone jumping on the gluten-free fad diet, the pizza is perfect; for someone with celiac, it's a reminder of how hard eating out can be. The same goes for Starbucks, which cannot guarantee a gluten-free environment, as well as many other retailers. What All This Means for Gluten-Free Customers There is good news on the horizon for the gluten-free community. What's so significant about the upswing in gluten-free merchandise is that the more gluten-free expands, the more variety there will be and the more that prices are likely to go down. It's the basic law of supply and demand. Whereas in 2007, low availability of gluten-free goods raised prices, soon it could be the opposite that is true. As more companies seek to gain a piece of the gluten-free pie, there will be greater options, more competition and lower price tags. "The more you produce of something, the less it costs in general in an industrial society, if you're talking about processed products," a University of Minnesota professor, Benajmin Senauer, said in an interview with Minnesota Public Radio. "And there's going to be increased competition [in the gluten-free market]."