As the foodservice industry navigates a longer than expected road to recovery, new research shows that focusing on gluten free offerings could be a beneficial move for hospitality businesses.

Recent research shows ‘gluten free’ continues to top the list of special dietary requests across the Australian hospitality industry. With gluten free requests five times greater than nut and peanut free meals, and seven times more requested than dairy and lactose free meals combined, the demand for gluten free foods certainly isn’t waning.

This continued appetite for gluten free meals now presents a window of opportunity for businesses looking to reshape their offerings as they emerge from the hospitality lock downs. However, the same research also revealed that one in three hospitality workers (36%) have never received any training in providing gluten free food for their customers, despite gluten being classified as a serious allergen.

Mark Clayton, Executive Chef for Nestlé Professional, recognises that providing genuine gluten free foods in a food service setting can be difficult for kitchen staff, with cross contamination and sourcing quality gluten free ingredients from reliable suppliers, cited as two of the biggest concerns when it comes to providing genuine gluten free meals.

To help businesses tackle these challenges and return even stronger than before, Nestlé Professional has released its second edition of Your Practical Guide to Gluten Free in Food Service – a free and easy to understand resource providing step-by-step solutions for gluten free menu options with case study scenarios.

With an estimated 3.1 million Australians (1 in 12) choosing gluten free meals, and gluten free requests coming in thick and fast, Accredited Practicing Dietitian and Brand Nutritionist at Nestlé Professional, Ms Karen Kingham, believes improving gluten free practices is a positive move for the hospitality industry.

As businesses continue to adapt, placing gluten free high on the agenda has the potential to improve menu offerings when hospitality returns to full service. According to Executive Chef Mark Clayton, that means ensuring best practices are implemented to ensure reliability of gluten free menu options which help build trust between the gluten free customer and the business.

Luckily, getting access to the right gluten free training has never been easier or more economically viable thanks to Nestlé Professional’s updated educational resource. Your Practical Guide to Gluten Free in Food Service is an essential read for front and back of house staff and is available via a free download. The Guide has been designed to complement Nestlé Professional’s portfolio of gluten free food products which, when combined, simplify menu planning and kitchen workload.

Download your copy of the free resource here.