While only 11 percent of U.S. households follow a gluten-free diet, about one in four consumers feel that gluten-free is good for everyone, reports The NPD Group, a leading global information company. However, the general healthfulness of gluten-free foods is offset, consumers say, by the high cost and taste of these foods, finds NPD’s recently released Understanding the Gluten-Free Trend report.
The perception that gluten-free is generally healthy is reflected in NPD’s finding that only 25 percent of those living in a gluten-free home say celiac disease or gluten sensitivity is the main reason. Among the other reasons consumers cite for following a gluten-free diet are that it improves digestive health and eliminates toxins from the body.
Food marketers also need to keep in mind that offsetting the consumer-perceived benefits of a gluten-free diet is what consumers consider the downsides, which are the high costs of gluten-free products and the taste of these products not being up to par. Half of gluten-free consumers say that they may not be willing to sacrifice taste in order to maintain a gluten-free diet; however, the most cited reason for choosing to not purchase a gluten-free product is that it was too expensive, according to The NPD Group report.
Posted By: Alexis Perry