Everything you need to make the right decisions
Providing the most comprehensive and up-to-date information and analysis of the Free-from Foods market, its consumers and the major players who make up that market.
Mintel has the answers you’re looking for
- What are the key challenges facing the industry?
- Who is the consumer and what do they want?
- Where are the opportunities, where are the risks and what lies ahead?
Point of sale market data
In conjunction with IRi, extensive point of sale data shows you what consumers are spending their money onMarket Size
How big is the market today and what is our 5 year forecast? Includes both best & worst case scenariosMarket Segmentation
What are the different segments within the market and how are those individual segments performing?
What are consumers looking for, what drives their buying habits and what are their main purchase influencers?Demographic breakdown
From iGen & Millennials to Baby Boomers & beyond. Who is spending money and what are they spending it on?Representative sample
We gather our data from real-world consumers, selected to accurately reflect precise global demographics
What are the key players doing, what has been successful for them and what was their marketing spend?Product innovation
Using data from our Global New Product Database, what products were launched and how well were they perceived?Opportunities
What happens next, which areas are likely to experience growth and what opportunities exist within the market?
Covered in this report
Free-from foods are defined as foods that are manufactured
and targeted specifically at consumers who suffer from food
intolerances and/or food allergies or who are following avoidance
diets. Foods that have been specifically manufactured (eg pasta,
bread) to cater for a gluten-free diet, for instance, are included
within this definition.
Food targeted at intolerance and allergy sufferers include:
- Gluten-free: Gluten is found in a range of cereals, including
wheat, barley, rye and spelt. Gluten-free products can contain
other allergenic proteins from wheat.
- Wheat-free: Wheat-free products can contain gluten from
other cereals such as barley or rye.
Despite these exceptions, the majority of wheat-/gluten-free
products are marketed as being both wheat- and gluten-free, as
gluten is present in wheat.
- Dairy-free/lactose-free: This category includes all cow’s milk
alternative products, including lactose-free dairy products and
non-mammalian milk alternatives (eg soya-based, rice-based
What you need to know
Estimated at £837 million in 2018, the UK free-from market has
grown by 133% over 2013-18. Although allergies/intolerances
and health-oriented reasons are important reasons for avoidance,
these are being surpassed by other reasons, such as those
relating to environment and animal ethics. Dairy-/lactose-free was
the fastest growing segment in 2017/18, likely driven by the media
buzz around plant-based foods and the environmental and ethical
benefits associated with dairy-free products.
While recent media attention around allergen labelling on
products is likely to see new regulations come into effect in the
near future, buyers/users of free-from products currently place
a higher emphasis on proving nutritional benefits. Focusing on
‘positive’ nutrition should help assuage consumer concerns over
potential nutrient deficiencies, while ‘clean labels’ should also
Expert analysis from a specialist in the field
Written by Alyson Parkes, a leading analyst in the Food & Drink sector, her extensive knowledge delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.
Concerns around the environment and animal ethics are giving dairy-free food and drink a boost, with the multidimensional appeal of these products boding well for the longevity of the dairy-free segment. Meanwhile, more clarity is needed to help shoppers easily identify which allergens products are free from. This should help to build trust, which will be timely given recent news coverage of the presence of unlabelled allergens in freshly prepared foods.Alyson Parkes
Food & Drink Analyst