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Industry Focus: Gluten Free Baked Goods

The gluten free baked goods industry is currently going through significant growth. Inadvertently, there has also been an increase in career opportunities in this field and food tech in general. This increase is mostly attributed to the recent gluten free food trend.

The Gluten Free Food Trend

According to the Financial Times, gluten free food is one of the leading trends in the food industry. Interestingly, people suffering from Celiac disease are not the only ones contributing to the gluten free industry.

Food Business News attributes the growing number of consumers interested in gluten free food products to rising health consciousness among consumers. This could be attributed to increased rates of obesity worldwide.

It seems that in a quest to live healthier lives, many people choose to cut gluten out of their diets. Gluten is a protein present in wheat, rye, and barley. Therefore, people who go on a gluten free diet avoid these grains and products made from them.

Are Gluten Free Baked Goods Healthy?

According to Everyday Health, a gluten free diet can lead to nutrient deficiencies, especially if you heavily rely on prepackaged baked goods. This is because they don’t contain those nutrients that are present in wheat flours.  Additionally, contrary to popular opinion, ingesting gluten free baked goods doesn’t necessarily help you lose weight.

In fact, if not taken in moderation, they may lead to weight gain. TODAY.com suggests that this is due to high content of sugars and calories in some of the prepackaged gluten free baked goods.

Although there aren’t any scientific facts to suggest that gluten free products are unhealthy, there is also no substantial evidence that going gluten free is healthier than the alternative. At the end of the day, going gluten free is a personal choice.

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How Do I Store Gluten Free Baked Goods?

The gluten in wheat, rye, and barley is what slows down the decomposition process. Since Dummies.com suggests using high protein flours.

Additionally, there are several steps that you can take when storing these goods so that they last longer. These include:

  • Using a little fat in the recipe
  • Freezing the foods soon after baking
  • Avoid storing the food in the refrigerator
  • Add a little vinegar or ascorbic acid to each recipe

How Do I Make Gluten Free Baked Goods Moist and Fluffy?

Gluten is the protein responsible for making baked goods moist, light and fluffy. It generally gives the food its structure. In the absence of gluten, baking becomes tricky. However, One Green Planet offers solutions to this problem. Here are some of them:

  • Use high protein flours since proteins bring stability. Examples of high protein flours include chickpea flour and quinoa flour.
  • Add gums such as xanthan gum and guar gum. This keeps the baked goods from falling apart.
  • Sift the flour to ensure that the result is light and fluffy. Beat the butter for at least 5 minutes to increase this effect.

Market Research On Gluten Free Products

According to Markets and Markets, the gluten free products market was valued at $ 4.63 billion in 2015. It is expected to grow at a CAGR of 10.4 %, reaching $ 7.59 billion in 2020. This market is divided into segments on the basis of type, source, and region.

By type, the segments include bakery products, pizzas & pasta, cereals & snacks, savories and other. Bakery products are the most dominant of these segments. These bakery products include muffins, bagels, breads, baking mixes, crackers, rolls, buns, and cookies.

On the basis of source, this market is divided into oilseeds & pulses, rice & corn, dairy & meat products and other crops segments. Geographically, the segments include Europe, North America, and Asia Pacific.

The European region is expected to have the greatest growth rate due to the rising health concerns of its inhabitants. The gluten free products market is most developed in the European and North American regions. This is due to increased health awareness in these regions.

The growth of this market is driven by nutritional values, weight management and digestive health conditions such as Celiac disease. The major restraint of this market is lack of health awareness in regions such as Asia Pacific and Latin America.

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Companies In This Industry

In this expansive industry, there are several companies. However, there are some key players. Here are a few:

This U.S based company was founded by a gluten intolerant chef and produces a large variety of gluten free products. This company provides gluten free cookies, bread, bread crumbs, panko, stuffing, and croutons.

Founded in 1987, Amy’s kitchen provides a variety of healthy and organic food products. This family business is known for its wide range of products including vegan, gluten free, soy free and nut free products. Its headquarters are in California.

This U.S based company is known for its array of natural foods. It offers a variety of gluten free breads, cake mixes, and biscuit mixes.

This U.K based company provides a variety of organic flours, ancient grain flours, baking ingredients, and biscuits. They provide a variety of gluten free products. This company is made up of a number of specialist flour millers and bakers.

Job Opportunities In The Industry

There are several job opportunities in the growing industry of Gluten Free Goods. Here are a few:

Plant and operations engineer

A plant and operations engineer plays an important role in a company that produces gluten free baked goods. This job involves researching, designing and developing new equipment integration plans among other duties. Viable candidates need a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering or a related field.

Manufacturing controls engineer

This position entails evaluating and recommending new processing equipment and systems. To be considered for such a position, you are expected to have a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Controls or Systems Engineering, and ideally have 5 years of related experience.

Chef

This is a very important role in a company that produces gluten free baked goods. This job involves coming up with delicious new recipes that will help attract more customers. Viable candidates are required to have some form of formal education in culinary arts.

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University programs

To pursue a career in this field, some kind of formal education in engineering would be useful. However, chefs, accountants, and human resource employees are also important. Experience in a food manufacturing environment could be an added advantage. Here are some university programs which will help you pursue a career in the industry:

Undergraduate programs

  1. University of Oxford (UK): BSc in Engineering Science
  2. Kingston University London (UK): BSc in Mechanical Engineering
  3. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (US): BSc in Chemical Engineering
  4. University of Cambridge (UK): BSc in Chemical Engineering

Postgraduate programs

  1. Stanford University (US): MSc in Mechanical Engineering
  2. California Institute of Technology (US): MSc in Chemical Engineering

Doctoral programs

  1. University of Manchester (UK): Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering

Conclusion

A report by Research and Markets states that baked goods will continue to dominate the global gluten free products market, growing at a CAGR of 10% between the years 2014 and 2025. Needless to say, the gluten free baked goods trend is here to stay.

With the growth of the market for gluten free goods comes endless opportunities not only for recent graduates, but for all job seekers. This is the right time for you to join this exciting industry. For current job vacancies in this field subscribe to our newsletter, visit our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter.

Theresa Kern

Theresa Kern

Business Development at beta|careers
Theresa is a management student and team member of the 2017 class at beta|careers.

Her responsibilities include growing and nurturing our platforms and, occasionally, taking care of bus tickets for the team. In her free time, she can be found on horseback out in the woods.
Theresa Kern

Foodtech