Nutraceuticals widen acceptanceJanuary 6, 2020
Nutraceuticals have seen a meteoric rise in popularity over the last few years in India, especially for preventive and proactive health care and disease management. It is not a surprise then that nutraceuticals are increasingly finding space in household cabinets, for a series of benefits, including preventive healthcare, health management, skin and hair, beauty and holistic health and wellness. According to Assocham Knowledge report 2018, the Indian nutraceuticals market is expected to grow from $4 billion in 2017 to $18 billion in 2025, representing a growth of 21% CAGR.
Some of the key drivers for the growth of nutraceuticals in India include:
1. Awareness: Rapid digitization and an increase in social media usage have increased awareness and access to vital information regarding nutrition, holistic health, and wellness. Further, increasing concerns around nutrition and health have led to the popularity of nutraceuticals as vital supplements for gaining wellness and maintaining good health
2. Increase in lifestyle diseases: Thanks to the stressors of the 21st-century urban lifestyle, an increasingly large number of people are facing diseases like diabetes, hypertension, etc., which demand a disciplined and long-term disease management programme. This has led to people reaching out for alternative supplements which can enhance wellness and holistic health
3. Inferior food quality: Lack of timely and nutritious food has led to an increased rate of malnutrition, even among the urban and affluent
section of society, leading to a deficiency of micro-nutrients. These deficiencies have led to the rise in nutritional supplements, which promise to meet the daily dietary requirement and help fight the nutritional deficiencies
4. Affordability: Increasing costs of hospitalization and complex procedures arising out of avoidable conditions are driving consumers towards health supplements and nutraceuticals. The adage, ‘prevention is better than cure’ is now well etched into the minds of consumers. As a result, nutraceuticals are now looked upon as important supplements that are on the priority list of monthly expenses, which, like food, cannot be skipped
Key challenges faced by nutraceuticals segment in India
- The lack of clear regulatory framework: Absence of a structured regulatory policy to govern the segment has been a major challenge to the growth and wide-spread acceptance of nutraceuticals in India.
- Trust worthiness: There have been instances of fake or counterfeit products which are unregistered and unapproved, and it has led to scepticism from consumers as well as an industry trade community Pricing: Being a preventive approach to health, pricing has been a key player for deciding the acceptance of nutraceuticals across socio-economic classes.
- Nutraceutical manufacturers and marketers are taking up the responsibility of educating the consumers by sharing detailed information about the product and its benefits and roles, while also bringing about transparency and credibility among the consumers. This will go a long way to build a stronger category for nutraceuticals as a health and wellness segment
- Industry players are also undertaking a number of initiatives on their own, including a renewed focus on improved quality standards of the product, enhanced transparency, and competitive pricing for innovations.
- Nutraceuticals in the form of capsules will gain wider popularity, given their ease of consumption and the flexibility for diverse formulation.
While the US, Europe and Japan currently account for over 90% of the total global nutraceutical market, India, China and other Southeast Asian countries are rising as new and emerging markets for nutraceuticals. As this trend is becoming more and more pronounced several international, well-reputed, and certified players from the US, Japan, and European countries are venturing into the Indian market, ready to leverage the potential by launching their products and expanding their portfolio according to the needs of Indian consumers. Thus, apart from the forecast growth of the industry, nutraceuticals are set to become widely accepted and a common part of Indian households in the near future!