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Coeliac UK, the national charity for coeliac disease announces today, 12th May 2014, new research from the University of Nottingham that has found a fourfold increase in the rate of diagnosed cases of coeliac disease in the United Kingdom over the past two decades, but, still three quarters of people with coeliac disease remain undiagnosed. ¹
The National Institute of Health & Care Excellence (NICE) previously estimated that only 10 - 15% of those with coeliac disease had been diagnosed, however, this latest research by Dr Joe West from University of Nottingham, funded by Coeliac UK and CORE has shown that the level of diagnosis has increased to 24%.
Coeliac disease is an autoimmune disease caused by intolerance to gluten. Left untreated it may lead to infertility, osteoporosis and small bowel cancer. 1 in 100 people in the UK have coeliac disease, with the prevalence rising to 1 in 10 for close family members
The only treatment for coeliac disease is a strict, lifelong gluten-free diet. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley and rye and, once diagnosed, people with coeliac disease need to eliminate all gluten-containing foods and make sure they only eat gluten-free varieties.
Researchers identified the number of people diagnosed during the study period using the diagnostic codes for coeliac disease recorded in the Clinical Practice Research Datalink (1990-2011).
This research, published by The American Journal of Gastroenterology comes out as the charity celebrates its annual Awareness campaign which this year is entitled the ‘Gluten-free Guarantee’ and aims to improve availability of gluten-free foods in stores across the UK.
Sarah Sleet, Chief Executive of Coeliac UK said: “This latest research shows that nearly a quarter of people with coeliac disease have now been diagnosed and gives an up to date picture of the diagnosis levels across the UK. Of course, increasing numbers with a diagnosis is good news and will inevitably mean that there will be an increased demand for gluten-free products in supermarkets. But the three quarters undiagnosed is around 500,000 people – a shocking statistic that needs urgent action.”
From 12-18 May 2014 the charity is asking people across the UK to support the ‘Gluten-free Guarantee’ which asks supermarkets to commit to have in stock eight core items of gluten-free food, making it easier for people with the condition to manage their gluten-free diet, which is their only treatment.
“Can you imagine going into your local supermarket and there is no bread you can eat, not one loaf not one slice? And when you check out the pasta, cereal or flour again there is nothing available on the shelf which means you have to trawl around two or three stores in order to be able to find your staple foods. This is not about your preferred brand but about the major supermarkets ensuring that they have sufficient stock in all their stores whatever their size for this growing market of people who depend on gluten-free food for their health.”
The symptoms of coeliac disease range from mild to severe and can vary between individuals. Not everyone with coeliac disease experiences gut related symptoms; any area of the body can be affected. Symptoms can include ongoing gut problems such as bloating, abdominal pain, nausea, constipation, diarrhoea, and wind, and other common symptoms include extreme tiredness, anaemia, headaches and mouth ulcers, weight loss (but not in all cases), skin problems, depression, and joint or bone pain.
Awash with cash, 181 of the UK’s leading Food Manufacturing companies face a strategic dilemma suggests a new report from industry analysts Plimsoll Publishing.
An abundance of unused cash is sitting on the books of just 181 cash rich Food Manufacturing companies.
However David Pattison, senior analyst, says that this “cash asset” needs to be out to work. Pattison added: “It sounds strange, but putting this cash to good use for the development of the company can be a very difficult problem. Just letting it sit in the bank, although comforting, is not going to have a huge benefit on the business. Do you make an acquisition, make a large capital investment, or return in to the shareholders through dividends? These are not easy decisions for these companies with improving cash to make. I look forward to seeing what they do in the coming months.”
Pattison goes on to say: “Over half of the 1000 companies researched have improved their liquidity and have increased their cash levels, which is a surprise given that margins are still under severe competitive pressure.”
Findings from the study highlight the split between rich and poor and concluded. Rich • 561 of the 1000 firms can be considered has having improving cash reserves • These 561 firms have seen their cash volumes rise by 35% on average • 91 firms are now holding more than £5 million of cash • How can they spend this cash and enhance the value and future of the business Poor • 439 of the 1000 firms have seen their cash levels fall • These 439 firms have seen their cash volumes fall by -26 % in 12 months • 147 firms are running dangerously low levels of cash cover. Can they generate enough profits to improve the overall financial health?
Copies of the report are available by calling Plimsoll Publishing Ltd on 01642 626 419 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Price Wars Drive Down Grocery Market Growth As Strategies Change
The latest grocery share figures from Kantar Worldpanel for the 12 weeks ending 27 April 2014, show British grocery market growth at just 1.9% – the lowest level for at least 11 years. This low growth has been caused by intensifying price competition among the supermarkets and a resulting drop in price inflation.
Edward Garner, director at Kantar Worldpanel, explains: “There are clear signs that the major supermarkets are reviewing their strategies in the face of increasing competition. We’re now seeing the big four moving away from ‘here today, gone tomorrow’ promotions and toward everyday low prices – with Tesco, Morrisons and Asda all announcing price cuts this month.
“The proportion of sales on promotion currently stands at 45% among the big four. By contrast, the figure at Aldi is just 3%. Tesco now states ‘Prices down and staying down’, Asda features ‘Price lock’, Morrisons introduced ‘I’m Cheaper – everyday low prices’ and the Co-operative has adopted ‘Fair and Square’ pricing in a move to give shoppers lower everyday prices with greater transparency. Lower prices across the board is great for shoppers, but has driven down market growth to its lowest level in 11 years.”
Waitrose, Aldi and Lidl all achieved new record shares this period with 5.1%, 4.7% and 3.5% respectively. Aldi’s sales growth rate of 36.1% is an all-time record for the retailer and Lidl’s 20.9% growth is its highest since August 2004.
Among the big four, Asda has proved the most resilient, holding its 17.3% market share and narrowly beating the market with 2.0% year-on-year growth. Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons have all suffered declines in their market share while Tesco and Morrisons have recorded a fall in actual sales.
Grocery inflation has shown its seventh successive fall and now stands at 1.5%* for the 12 week period ending 27 April 2014. This is the lowest level since June 2010 and reflects intensifying price competition.