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Risk of developing celiac does not hinge on when infants first try gluten, study finds

When infants first eat gluten does not appear to influence whether they are diagnosed with celiac disease, but their socioeconomic status likely does, according to two recently published studies. 

Sales of gluten-free products continue to grow double digits on quality, selection

Improving the quality and selection of gluten-free foods available in mainstream channels will help sales in the category grow nearly 1.5 times through 2019, according to market analysis by Packaged Facts. 

General Mills packs whole grain into pancakes and waffles

General Mills has filed a patent for whole grain pancake and waffle batters that use a blend of wheat, brown rice and millet flours.

The start-up era? Curious consumers and online shoppers help, says Mintel

The start-up explosion in bakery, cereal and snacks will continue as online shopping booms and consumers seek out the extraordinary, says Mintel.

Falling gas prices offer growth opportunity for private label

Tumbling gas prices that are lining consumers’ pockets with savings may provide an unexpected opportunity for private label to steal market share from national brands, rather than the other way around, recent consumer survey results reveal. 

Grupo Bimbo faces strong headwinds with Saputo Bakery

Grupo Bimbo’s acquisition of Saputo Bakery is a surprise because the Canadian packaged cake firm is unprofitable and struggling, says Euromonitor International.

Kellogg files patent for versatile micro-bran

Kellogg has developed a process that micro-grinds bran to create a more versatile and palatable powder.

BelVita hopes to take a bite out of breakfast market share with new mini-biscuits

Consumers increasingly are turning away from cereal for breakfast in favor of nutrition-dense, on-the-go foods, creating a growth opportunity for consumer packaged foods companies that can offer fast solutions to the first meal of the day. 

FoodNavigator predicts top industry drivers for 2015

It’s time to get out our crystal balls and predict the hottest trends in the European food and drink sector for the year ahead. What’s in store for 2015?

Good carbs, bad carbs to play into 2015

The steer away from carbs will continue into 2015 but if industry is clever, the shift presents plenty of opportunities, says a healthy foods expert.

News in brief

Grupo Bimbo strengthens Canada footprint with Saputo Bakery buy

Grupo Bimbo has bought Saputo Bakery via its Canadian subsidiary Canada Bread for C$120m ($103m).

Weight management and digestive wellness will heavily influence food purchases in 2015

Consumer desire to effectively manage their weight and improve their health through food will continue to influence new product development and sales in 2015, according to New Nutrition Business, a food- and nutrition-focused market research firm. 

Mudd+Wyeth take the nutrition bar category off-leash with YaffBars

To make it in the crowded energy and nutrition bar category, a company needs a great tasting product, top-notch packaging, persistence, fortitude and differentiation, says Mark Brooks, founder of Mudd+Wyeth, a lifestyle company for dogs and their owners. 

NPD watch: Green tea cereal, meat bars and bread for women

Antioxidant-rich cereals, protein-packed snack bars and bread tailored to women’s nutritional needs were just some of the product innovations identified by Datamonitor Consumer during 2014.

The biggest rise was in products making non-GMO or GMO-free claims

Non-GMO, gluten-free, Kosher, vegan, all-natural… What can we learn from claims made on new products in the US in 2014?

Non-GMO, Kosher, gluten-free, ethical, environmentally-friendly, lactose-free, vegan, no additives/preservatives, and on-the-go claims are all gaining more traction on US food labels; while growth in ‘all-natural’- antioxidant- and low/no/reduced sugar/sodium/fat claims has been pretty flat over the past six years, according to Mintel.

Patent Watch

General Mills eyes patent hat-trick for ready-to-bake gluten-free doughs

General Mills has filed three patents for gluten-free doughs that it has developed in ready-to-bake format to offer an alternative to dry mixes.

Gen Z, culinary cannabis, and tea: Top 10 trends for 2015 in specialty foods

The Specialty Food Association has released its Top 10 trends for 2015, with some eyebrow raising predictions on the list. 

Strap: Big interview, Steve Gill, CEO, Talenti

Talenti CEO on why he got into bed with Unilever: ‘Now we can put more flavors and more sizes in front of more consumers, more quickly’

Does selling up mean selling out? Not if you go in with your eyes open, says the boss of Talenti, who has just jumped into bed with Unilever,  but says the premium gelato brand will retain its autonomy, its integrity, and its management team, post the acquisition.

Monsanto exec: GMOs are not the Holy Grail. What they are is an important tool if used properly

Genetically engineered crops are not a magic bullet and some weeds have become resistant to the herbicide glyphosate (RoundUp) used with selected GM crops, said Monsanto’s chief technology officer Dr Robert Fraley in a debate on Wednesday. But that doesn’t mean the whole ag-biotech experiment has ‘failed’ and that we should throw out the GM baby with the bathwater.

Free breakfast in the classroom could “level the academic playing field,” education advocates say

Breakfast remains the most important meal of the day and serving it to students for free offers significant benefits even though a recent study found it did not improve academic performance as hypothesized, health and education advocates argue. 

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