Every year, the Italian National Health Service (NHS) provides about 200,000 celiac people (based on 2017 data) living in Italy with financial support of about 250 million euro to cover the cost of their specific dietary constrains. The existence of gluten-free products of high quality and affordable price is very important for the quality of life of celiac people and the sustainability of public support. Over the last decade, the market for gluten-free products has experienced a dramatic surge, with an increasing shelf space dedicated to these products in supermarkets, and a large variety of products both in terms of kind of agricultural inputs and processing and packaging methods. This study aimed at assessing the offer of gluten-free (GF) pasta in Italian supermarkets, with respect to its ability to meet the needs of celiac people in terms of variety, prices and safety. A hedonic price analysis was performed. Results indicated that GF pasta is sold only in 44% of the 212 stores of the sample, with a price equal to more than twice that of conventional pasta. A premium price was found for the following attributes: small packages, brands specialized in GF products, content in fiber and the presence of quinoa as ingredient.
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