The global demand for gluten free foods and beverages is poised to register a robust CAGR of about 14% between 2014 and 2020, according to a report from Research and Markets. North America is the largest market currently and is also expected to be the fastest growing in the next few years. The segment of gluten free bread products, cookies, and snacks form the largest, and also the fastest growing on a worldwide basis.
A sizeable population shows typical symptoms of intolerance that is classified as celiac disease. This is an inherited autoimmune disorder in which gluten damages the small intestine, with the only remedy for it being a strict gluten free diet for life. For instance, prevalence of this disease in North America is around three to four million, though only 5%-10% of the cases have been currently diagnosed.
The market for gluten free foods and beverages has undergone a radical change from being considered specialty niche products to mainstream products. Millions of individuals around the world have started consuming gluten free products, not only because of being diagnosed with celiac disease but also because of a general perception of maintaining better health.