Friday, 4 March 2011

Warburtons Gluten Free Launch.

On January 21st I attended, or rather snuck in on,  the Warburton’s Gluten free event at the Covent Garden Hotel. Situated just over the road from Bauer headquarters, it would be rude not to have popped in! 

Another scrummy breakfast was on the cards, this time it was a selection of the much anticipated Warburton’s gluten free breads, teacakes and crumpets- including Phil Vickery's own bacon- which for the record was delicious!

The lovely Phil at the launch
Phil Vickery- I hear you call. What the devil was he doing there? 

Well, the celebrity chef has teamed up with Warburton’s to create the first mainstream gluten- free breads for people who suffer from Coeliac disease. 

Working closely both with Phil and Coeliac UK, the national charity for people with Coeliac disease, they have developed a range of breads, teacakes and crumpets all completely gluten and wheat free- so celiac’s  no longer have to miss out on what perhaps you and I take for granted. 

It has been recorded that one in 100 people in the UK are thought to suffer from Coeliac disease, however according to NICE (national institute of health and clinical excellence) only 10-15% are currently diagnosed. 

It’s a disease that we Britons know little about, even though there is over half a million people in the UK suffering from it. 

When Warburtons quizzed 3,000 people nationwide many Brits were unsure what the disease actually entailed, with 8% of people thinking a person with coeliac disease couldn’t eat salt, 6% thought it was a term for a first- time mother and 3% even thought it was the name of a religious cult! Hmm, not so great awareness then. 

Phil Vickery, celebrity chef and gluten- free food expert explains “There are more coeliacs in Britain than the population of Coventry and Hull combined- yet there remains much confusion about this disease”. 

However the good news is that research has shown Brits are willing to learn how to cook for people with coeliac disease.  

As Phil enthusiastically states, “the good news is that Brits are willing to learn about gluten- free and wheat – free dietary requirements of others and there is an increasing range of great- tasting food available to these people so they don’t have to miss out!” 

Not only are people willing to learn, but many are considering a wheat- free diet for themselves. With 18% of the population choosing to buy gluten/wheat free foods for themselves or their family, it is becoming a popular lifestyle choice. Mostly the young crowd, (25-34) year olds, are  likely to take up a gluten free and wheat free diet, whilst quite contradictorily it is the older generation (55+) who are the most aware of what coeliac disease is!  

So whilst gluten- free diets are becoming fashionable, I think the most important thing is that coeliacs can have greater access to gluten- free breads and can actually enjoy a piece of toast for breakfast or a tasty sandwich for lunch. 

The fact that Warburtons have launched a gluten and wheat free range across supermarkets means that there is a greater accessibility for coeliacs to taste good quality gluten free breads. 

Sarah Sleet, CEO of coeliac UK states that “Warburtons is the first major mainstream UK baker to launch a gluten- free and wheat free range and we’re delighted to see greater food choices becoming increasingly available to people with coeliac disease”. 

Do you suffer from Coeliac disease? Is it hard for you to find gluten- free products? Or perhaps much like me, had you not really heard of Coeliac disease before and didn't know the slightest what it was all about? 

I really did learn alot from the Gluten- free event, from chatting to the various guests, food editors and coealiac experts galore. Including Mr. Phil Vickery himself who was extremely enthusatic about the new venture, not to mention graciously welcoming- he even held my glass for me so I could eat my bacon sarnie!

 So let's hope this article has helped to demystify the stigma of gluten- free diets and if you want find out more check out the lovely Sarah's gluten-inspired blog @ for tasty recipes and know- how on living a gluten- free life, or perhaps try reading Phil Vickery's new recipe book Seriously good gluten free baking- which I received free in my goodie bag!

The full Warburtons range- available at a supermarket near you!


  1. Aww you linked to my blog! A good piece, I like it - and you managed to find a photo! :) Hope you're well my dear xx

  2. That's okay m'love, you're the best place to go for info on the subject. I saw images from the event on the site, but alas not of us! x x


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