With only four months remaining in 2023, nutraceutical industry experts have already turned their attention to 2024. Part of our mission to deliver what’s next means anticipating and integrating solutions for consumer trends with new ingredient discoveries and technological innovations in product forms. As reported by Nutraceuticals World1, the surge in growing trends and experiential advantages spanning stress, mood, cognition, fatigue, anxiety, depression, and insomnia could potentially resonate with up to 41% of consumers. Popular categories that continue to gain momentum include nootropics, beauty from within, and gut support.
The growth of technology and social media platforms has changed the way consumers learn about and buy their supplements. The dissemination of wellness information often comes from influencers that profoundly impact the purchasing habits of their community of followers. The messaging promotes supplements as part of a daily routine and healthy lifestyle across a wide range of popular categories. This segment of consumers often looks beyond the key nutrients they may be deficient in such as Vitamin D, magnesium, and iron. They’re in pursuit of supplements that help them achieve their daily wellness goals- mushroom blends they can mix in coffee as they start their day, greens they can add to their favorite shake for a healthy breakfast, a probiotic chew for a hint of something sweet, and thirst-quenching electrolyte effervescent tablets they can add to water during a fitness class. These products not only provide health benefits but are also part of the healthy lifestyle they’re pursuing.
Take a look at our projected supplement trends for 2024, then contact us for a price quote to see how we can help you get ahead of the competition.
Herbs & Botanicals: Making Room for New Hero Ingredients
NBJ projects nearly six percent growth in herbal and botanical sales in 2024.2 Why is so much growth expected? Herbs and botanicals make up 19% of the total dietary supplement sales and are positioned nicely to meet the increase in demand for specialized/focused ingredients. This category of ingredients is becoming more popular with health-conscious consumers as demonstrated by a healthy compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5%.
Ashwagandha and elderberry were the most recent trending supplement ingredients in the segment. Their discoveries led to significant growth. What’s the next hero ingredient? NBJ predicts mushrooms will be popular over the next year, with growth having quadrupled since 2018.3 Interest in combination herbal products, as well as higher quality standardized ingredients, has also increased. According to the Natural Marketing Institute (NMI), 25% of the general population presently uses medicinal mushrooms. Primary reasons are to promote energy, a healthy immune system, and support overall health, while mood and cognitive health were listed as the leading secondary benefits.
Vitamins and Minerals: Innovation Opportunities Exist
One of the ways owners of dietary supplement companies can differentiate their products is by focusing on delivery and flavor systems that make their products unique. Dosages can also be adjusted to meet the needs of a specific target population based on age, location, and lifestyle. There is a growing demand for supplements that are tailored to specific health concerns and vitamins can be customized for the most discerning customers.
Vitamins have always been the anchoring category for dietary supplements. Over 58%4 of US adults take at least one vitamin supplement a day. Vitamins typically account for the most sales in the supplement industry, especially during COVID-19. However, since 2022, the NBJ has seen a sharp decline in vitamin sales. Based on our four-plus decades of contract supplement manufacturing experience, new and existing supplement brand owners should view this as a tremendous opportunity to develop and bring innovative, quality-driven products to the market.
For example, the vitamin market has been represented in the past by the workhorse, stand-alone, comprehensive multivitamin approach. As the market evolves, it has become highly fragmented, and its evolution drives towards a more focused, specialized solutions approach. The multivitamin strategy no longer applies, and consumers are looking for the next generation of combined vitamin ingredients that meet their specific needs.
Concerning minerals, magnesium is unquestionably the fastest-growing one available due to its suggested ties to promoting mood support and supporting a healthy immune system.5 It’s also a very versatile supplement that can be manufactured in numerous dose forms including gummies, chews, and drink mixes, and can be packaged in stick packs, shots, and traditional bottles and jars.
Sports Nutrition: The Top Trending Supplement in the Industry
Sports nutrition supplement sales increased by 9.7% in 2022, making it the year’s fastest-growing category.6 NBJ says the popularity of sports nutrition supplements is a “commentary on the American mood.” Following the pandemic, health and fitness have become more popular as Americans look to get moving again. This growth has led to new product forms and flavors expanding the category. Collagen products have been the staple of women’s sports nutrition historically but are now finding new life as the benefits have crossed over into the beauty-from-within, bone health, and weight management categories, all growing in popularity.
The growth in sports nutrition supplements has been broad, with significant increases in sales for pills, powders, and functional beverages. Powders alone are a $7.29 billion industry.7 More progress is slated to be made around clean label claims as well as the consumer demand for more clinically validated “proof” of efficacy.
Hydration and replenishment are winning the attention of consumers across the category. Electrolytes that provide a burst of thirst-quenching flavor are booming in the form of powders, effervescent, and liquids. Consumers are looking for the ideal balance of elements to support their electrolyte levels as they lose fluid through physical exertion. Staying hydrated is gaining recognition with all types of consumers and more traction is expected in their use in cross-over categories such as general health, beauty from within, and immunity.
In the supplement market trends, meal replacements have seen a slight decrease of about 1.2%8. The NBJ suggests this may be due to more exciting marketing behind sports nutrition supplements than meal replacements. Despite this, the NBJ does not see growth stopping anytime soon, making sports nutrition one of the top trending supplements in the industry.
The Nootropics and Beauty-from-within Categories are Growing Due to Next Generation Innovation
Historically, multivitamins were all that was needed to supplement your health. Two exciting growth categories are nootropics and beauty-from-within. These categories also present opportunities for new formats, which increase their attractiveness to various consumer segments. Millennials and Gen Z are gravitating towards drinks and powders that provide a satisfying flavor experience with an instant feeling of wellness, while baby boomers and Gen X prefer the ease of solid dose forms.
Nootropics are supplements that have been shown to promote cognitive health. First-generation supplements include caffeine and Ginkgo biloba. However, new interest in the category has garnished attention from students, seniors, and sports enthusiasts alike for next-gen products such as L-theanine taken with caffeine. This combination may conjure up feelings of calmness and may be linked to increased creativity. Creatine, widely used in the sports nutrition world, provides the mental energy many consumers are looking for without the negative side effects such as jitters and insomnia.
Beauty-from-within is a category that has seen sustained growth across all age groups. Prevention is popular amongst young consumers while improving fine lines and wrinkles and hydration are popular among the baby boomers. The cosmetic industry and supplement industry are converging here to provide consumers with an inside-out strategy to promote visible consumer-perceivable results. Solutions come from both the sports nutrition category as well as immunity, gut health, and nootropics. Beauty-from-within ingredients that have shown clinical results include resveratrol, MSM, and an array of collagen technologies.
Continued Growth Anticipated for the Gut Health Category
Supplements that support the gut can modify and improve intestinal flora and provide other health benefits. These include the “biotic bundle:” prebiotics, probiotics, and postbiotics. Probiotics are live microorganisms (typically bacteria or yeast) that can impart benefits on the gut microbiome and beyond. There are numerous probiotic strains, each with its own special abilities.
Prebiotics support the growth of these intestinal bacteria and their propagation in the GI tract. While most people associate the term prebiotic with dietary fiber, growing research has shown that many other nutrients, including flavonoids, have powerful prebiotic activity.
Postbiotics are relative newcomers to the nutrition industry. While the exact definition of postbiotics is still debated, they generally include inanimate probiotics and their constituents, plus the metabolites they produce. Because of the potential to provide wide-ranging benefits, there is growing consumer demand for symbiotics, which combine the beneficial effects of pre-, pro-, and postbiotics in one product.
As science continues to discover more about how the microbiome influences so many aspects of our health, this figures to be a growing category for years to come. Since probiotics are typically very sensitive to heat and moisture, expert formulation, manufacturing, and packaging selection are crucial to producing stable, successful products in this area.
How Can Vitaquest Help You Capitalize on 2024’s Projected Supplement Trends?
Effectively capitalizing on next year’s supplement trends will require fast action, one-of-a-kind innovation, and an expert manufacturing partner who can help take your product from idea to market. That is where Vitaquest can help.
For over 45 years, Vitaquest has been the trusted choice for high-quality, innovative dietary supplement manufacturing and formulation services by new and established supplement companies. Our state-of-the-art manufacturing, packaging, labeling, and fulfillment services save you time, money, and stress, allowing you to focus on delivering what’s next in the nutraceuticals industry. Contact us today at 800-526-9095 or request a supplement manufacturing price quote to get started.
About Lauren Samot, Commercial Innovation Leader
With over 7 years at Vitaquest, Lauren Samot’s journey from Technical Services Associate to her current role as Commercial Innovation Leader exemplifies her dedication and growth. Leading the innovation team, she fuels business expansion through collaborative efforts across sales, product development, and operations. With a decade-long career in nutraceuticals, Lauren excels in manufacturing, raw materials, and product development. A Vitaquest Proud Champion Award recipient, she holds a B.S. in Nutritional Science with a minor in Public Health from Boston University and is an accomplished Registered Dietitian and member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
1Mike Montemarano, Herbal and Botanical Supplements Continue to Outpace Broader Market Amid Economic Uncertainty, Nutraceuticals World, July 2023
2“NBJ Supplement Business Report 2023”, Nutrition Business Journal, Informa, 2023, pg. 44
3“NBJ Supplement Business Report 2023”, Nutrition Business Journal, Informa, 2023, pg. 42
4MacMillan, Amanda, “Is it Possible to Take Too Many Vitamins”, Health, Dotdash Meredith, 17 October 2022, https://www.health.com/nutrition/too-many-vitamins, Accessed 24 August 2023
5“NBJ Supplement Business Report 2023”, Nutrition Business Journal, Informa, 2023, pg. 26
6“NBJ Supplement Business Report 2023”, Nutrition Business Journal, Informa, 2023, pg. 52
7“NBJ Supplement Business Report 2023”, Nutrition Business Journal, Informa, 2023, pg. 52
8“NBJ Supplement Business Report 2023”, Nutrition Business Journal, Informa, 2023, pg. 52