Coeliacs, a dark business object for brands


Gluten intolerants are in luck because soon they be able to enjoy one of the most forbidden pleasures for them: drink a good glass of beer in a bar. Mahou, the largest brewer in Spain, has launched its first beer for coeliacs. The new gluten-free Mahou Cinco Estrellas has begun to distribute in supermarkets, bars and hotels both in bottle format, such as canned. It is not the first case in our country. Estrella Damm manufactured from a decade ago its Damm Daura and has just launched a new double malt variant dubbed Märzen.

Coeliacs being able to choose between two brands of beer is a good example of that society is gradually sensitized to this intolerance. But not only that. It is also proved that companies have discovered a reef in commercial products without gluten. And it makes sense.

The Federation of Celiac Spain (FACE) estimates that there are about half a million people diagnosed with coeliac disease in Spain. They are just over 1% of the population, but the disease increased by 15% each year. Furthermore, FACE estimates that although not all are diagnosed as intolerant, 6% of the population is sensitive to gluten. And the trend seems to grow up. According to data from Sage in countries like the United States, a third of the population opts for gluten-free products if they can choose from.

Shops, restaurants and businesses reinvent themselves to include in its offer products tailored to this minority. Is the case of large franchises restoration as VIPS and Tommy Mel’s group, which reserved a page of their menu for these intolerant.

They are not alone. Supermarkets have become products for coeliac in one of his priorities. Although the pionner was Mercadona, the range gluten products gains prominence in other supermarkets such as Eroski and Carrefour, which a few months ago released a new line of private label items.

Also marks life have joined the bandwagon of products for coeliacs. This is the case of Valencia Dulcesol, which recently expanded its range gluten-free custard or pasta Gallo, a pioneer in this regard.

Almost 1.500 euros more in the shopping cart

“The increased presence in supermarkets has been very positive” value from FACE, the Federation of Coeliac Associations. However, they mention that there is still a long way to go. According to their calculations, a coeliac pays 1,468.72 euros more in annual shopping cart, 30.60 euros more per week and 122.39 euros more in a month.

The group has spent years claiming about the economic loss associated with their disease. They ask for tax advantages. The idea sounds rare in Spain, but it is a reality in several European countries.

For example, in Italy the State pays a subsidy of 100 euros per person. Norway pays up to 240 euros per month to each patient, the highest quantity in Europe for this condition.

The day is long past when coeliac had make a living in specialty stores where prices were usually inversely proportional to the taste of food. “Staples, as a package of macaroni or a loaf of bread, cost three times more” recalls Lola Campos, mother of Patricia, intolerant since her birth. Nowadays life for these people is almost as normal as for the others. However, there is still a long way to go.