Contrary to popular opinion, the increased demand for gluten-free products is driven by the belief that they are healthier than traditional wheat flour-based baked products. Every commercial baker should offer these products to cater to this growing market segment.
Consumers do not simply demand gluten-free products, but they also want the taste profile of them to be flavoursome. A consumer who does not have celiac disease (gluten intolerance) already has a sense of taste and texture similar to that of regular wheat-based baked goods, so they prefer gluten-free products that have a similar taste and texture rather than ones that compromise on flavour.
The market for gluten-free baked products can be segmented into sub-categories such as biscuits, cookies, baked breads, cakes, pastries, and other gluten-free baked products. The process of baking gluten free products like these in a commercial setting is not an easy one, and it comes with many challenges. The thought of overcoming these challenges is what really stops bakers from offering a wide portfolio of gluten-free baked products at their outlets.
Here are few of the key challenges faced by bakers who wish to bake gluten free confectionery products at their outlets:
1. Recipe for Gluten-Free Baking
The first problem that professional bakers confront when considering gluten-free products is developing a recipe that will function in a commercial setting. Replacing wheat flour and gluten, as well as its role in baking, is a difficult endeavour. Each ingredient serves a certain purpose, so while some add to the taste, others contribute to the texture or flavour.
2. Sourcing of Ingredients
In order for the consistency or output to remain consistent over time, it is also crucial to make sure that the ingredients chosen for baking gluten-free confectionery items are readily available on the market and that their quality & consistency are maintained. Various items in various ratios must be taken into consideration based on the gluten-free application & methods.
3. Inconvenience & High Pricing
Due to the still-relatively-small market for gluten-free baked goods, it can be difficult to store supplies, and bakers may find themselves having to keep multiple ingredients on hand to make various kinds of gluten-free goods, which is somewhat problematic. Because baked gluten-free items must be a bit more expensive for the market to accept readily, they often have a lower yield than standard products due to the difficulties of baking, acquiring ingredients, and stocking.
4. Product Consistency Concerns
Consistency is a critical aspect in today's business and retaining customers totally depends upon the consistency of the product and service. Variation happens in every product that uses natural ingredients however if the number of ingredients used are higher, then the possibility of variation in the product also increases. Hence, maintaining consistency also plays a vital role and act as a challenge for bakers baking gluten free confectioneries.
5. Separate Equipment & Tools for Baking
Let’s not forget that gluten free products are primarily for those suffering from celiac disease and for such consumers, even a trace of gluten can prove to be fatal. Therefore it is critically essential that any potential possibility of gluten exposure is avoided while making gluten free products. This means maintaining a separate set of equipment, separate baking areas, separate staff wear, separate raw materials storage area, etc. Hence, an additional investment is required to be made by any bakery looking to produce and sell gluten free products.
6. Low Shelf Life
Gluten free products typically have a very low shelf-life post baking. With unpredictable consumption patterns, it can be an expensive affair to offer a range of different gluten free products. The lack of wheat flour and gluten in the products significantly reduces the moisture retention capacity of the product.
Understanding the complexity & challenges of baking sweet gluten free baked products, SwissBake® has introduced the All-Purpose Gluten Free Cake & Confectionery Mix, a versatile complete mix ideal for preparing a variety of delicious gluten-free sweet baked products. For more details on SwissBake® All Purpose Gluten Free Cake & Confectionery Mix, please visit our website.