Several major trends have demonstrated staying power in the food industry; among clean label and natural trends, gluten-free is another that’s moved from fad to full-fledged. In fact, a recent Gallup poll found one in five Americans try to include gluten-free foods in their diets.
For the poll, which was conducted in July, Gallup asked 1,009 Americans about the foods they include, or avoid, in their diet. "Gluten-free foods" was included in the list this year for the first time.
While some people avoid gluten due to gluten sensitivity or Celiac disease, the data indicate far more U.S. adults say they actively try to include gluten-free foods in their diet than actually suffer from celiac disease. Some Americans may eat gluten-free foods as part of an attempt to lose weight, and some perceive gluten-free foods as healthy.
Gallup’s poll shows demographics have minimal impact on gluten-free purchase decisions; one in three nonwhite Americans say they actively include gluten-free foods, compared with 17 percent of whites. Age has a modest relationship to use of gluten-free foods, the data shows, with one in four adults younger than 50 years engaging in the practice, compared with 17 percent of those aged 50 years and older. No major indication The results indicate no major differences between men and women.
Interestingly, there’s still a large number of Americans who don’t seek gluten-free options. The data shows the majority (58 percent) say they don't think about gluten-free foods either way.
Explore more trends affecting the food and beverage industry in the Image Gallery: Top Trends at IFT15.