Gluten Free Alliance
We want to put safe gluten free food on every table
Why join the Gluten Free Alliance?
An alliance forms when you need to reach a goal that is better achieved with the support of others. Working with the Gluten Free Alliance achieves this for food businesses.
AOECS and its local member societies want to help food companies ensure that their gluten free offering is safe, provide training and access to our exclusive gluten free trademark that is recognised and trusted by consumers globally.
The market for gluten free food has increased with 6% CAGR between 2015-2020. The growth continues. Trust from consumers is vital when it comes to selling gluten free food.
As an owner of a brand for gluten free food, there are several benefits in getting your products certified with the Crossed Grain Trademark.
Charge your products with trust at the point-of-purchase moment
- The trademark is valid for and reaches over 700 million European consumers with only one licence.
- 8 out of 10 gluten free consumers prefer a product marked with the Crossed Grain Trademark over an only "gluten free" labeled product.
- You will benefit from the trust and recognition of a 40-year-old trademark that almost all in-market consumers know.
- A worldwide licence for use of the Crossed Grain Trademark is possible to obtain for use outside of the AOECS territory.
- Audit to meet requirements of AOECS Standard available from wide range of global certification bodies.
- The trademark is already widely spread with the over 23 thousand active licenced products in circulation.
What is the Gluten Free Alliance
The Gluten Free Alliance, recognises the collaborative nature and collective effort of the national coeliac patient organisations (who make up the c.40 members of the AOECS) and the food industry to bring safe gluten free food to those who need it.
For people with coeliac disease avoiding gluten is the only recognised treatment for this life long condition, and is an imperative for their well being.
Since 1988 the AOECS has been working to improve the quality of life for people with coeliac disease by supporting national organisations to provide advice, support research, and improve the care and treatment of patients.
The Gluten Free Alliance is the part of the AOECS that focuses on improving access to safe gluten free food as a treatment for people who cannot eat gluten.
Why we created the Gluten Free Alliance
Our mission is to put safe gluten free food on every table. In this work, we have created the AOECS Standard for Gluten Free Foods (AOECS Standard) and started the European Licensing System (ELS) to guide both food business operators and consumers on how to manufacture and find safe gluten free food by licensing the Crossed Grain Trademark.
We have the ambition to grow and develop even further as an international bridge between people who have to eat safe gluten free food, the food industry and the decision makers whose decision affects the living conditions for coeliacs.
To help us reach out more effectively and consistently to these audiences we have created the sub brand of AOECS - the Gluten Free Alliance. It consists of a visual guide, logos, social media accounts and preferred tone of voice to help us become more recognisable when communicating with our commercial and consumer stakeholders.
Consistent use of our new sub brand the Gluten Free Alliance will reinforce our profile and show our commitment and role as providers of clear and authoritative food safety information and schemes.
What is new?
We know that gluten free consumers and the food industry expect high standards and that their needs are constantly evolving. We are not complacent and want to adapt and improve to exceed expectations. The launch of the Gluten Free Alliance brand is intended to achieve this and starts with the way in which we present ourselves.
One of the most visible changes will be the launch of an improved Crossed Grain Trademark. AOECS does this for multiple reasons:
- Firstly, we want to clarify the meaning of the symbol for consumers. By adding some new wording and design enhancementsto the existing Crossed Grain Trademark we achieve this.
- Secondly, we are providing clear rules for using the trademark. With clearer directions on how to apply the Crossed Grain Trademark we will make the look consistent and easier for consumers to identify.
- Thirdly, we are making the look more consistent. We are reducing the number of variants of the trademark allowed, in order to make it easier for consumers to recognise.
Alongside these improvements, the Gluten Free Alliance launch, includes an update to the AOECS Standard, - the guide for food businesses to meet the gluten free food safety requirements, allowing the use of our Crossed Grain Trademark. This will improve our licence contracts and strengthening our cooperation with international certification bodies.
Please contact you local coeliac society for further information.Find your local society
Read more about our international certification program
The market for gluten free food
The world has changed a lot since AOECS formed in 1988. So has AOECS. The depth of cooperation between coeliac societies has increased and the European Licensing System for safe gluten free food has grown from a local concern into over 23 thousand licensed food products through our food safety scheme. A Crossed Grain Trademark licence is now valid in almost every European country and worldwide licenses can also be obtained on request.
The intra-EU trade (i) of food products has steadily grown and so has the market for gluten free products. It is clear, that food products now travel over country borders within the EU more freely than ever. Over a five-year period, the consumer spending on gluten free food grew by 6% per year (CAGR) (ii) and this growth is by many experts expected to continue.
By licensing your products, we help you to be more confident that the production of your gluten free food products is safe and that the gluten free claim is valid and obvious for consumers. Surveys conducted by several National Coeliac Societies show that 80% of coeliac consumers trust a product marked with the Crossed Grain Trademark and choose it over a product merely labeled as "gluten free".
(ii) Source: Statista, gluten free per capita spending European union https://www.statista.com/statistics/646341/gluten-free-per-capita-spending-european-union-eu/Gluten Free Certification