Nutrition Business Journal Predicts Dietary Supplements Face Big Opportunities & Risks

Dec 17, 2013, 09:00 ET from Penton

BOULDER, Colo., Dec. 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Nutrition Business Journal (NBJ), a division of Penton, has tracked the advance of supplements into mainstream culture for 15 years running. In 2012, dietary supplements continued to enjoy healthy market growth, with protein-rich categories such as sports nutrition and meal supplements leading the pack. In 2013, NBJ forecasts growth of 7.6 percent for the market overall, however, the challenges now facing the industry are significant and cause for tempered optimism. 


"Popular press has moved from skeptical of supplementation to downright fearful of it," says Marc Brush, NBJ's editor in chief. "Sales remain healthy, but the chorus of critics is too loud to ignore. The industry needs to get right in the consumer psyche before those consumers lose the faith." 

In a freely downloadable infographic (, NBJ breaks the market down into three key trends - Whole-food Supplements, Consolidation and Personalization:

Whole-food Supplements
The advance of supplement formulations grounded in whole foods with light-as-a-feather processing presents real opportunity for the industry to realign itself with consumers. In 2013, the whole-food supplement market has estimated sales of $1.5 billion, with annual growth rates that nearly double the overall market.

As supplements translate into big business, insiders fear the impact to innovation and authenticity with leading brands landing in the hands of large pharma and consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies. According to estimates, the industry could look very different in a few years' time, with pharma accounting for 40 percent ownership of the industry and CPG accounting for 8 percent.

The future of nutrition as a true therapy for lifestyle-based illness rests in personalization, which combines genomics with deep bloodwork to target disease before it sets in. In the coming year, expect to hear more about "right medicine, right patient, right time" and expect smart supplement companies to respond in kind with personalized product offerings. Also watch for ancillary industries like app development and big data analytics to grow increasingly interested in the supplement space.

The infographic and related trends are excerpted from NBJ's 2013 Supplement Business Report, available at The report includes historical sales results by product category and channel, as well as forward estimates that leverage 15 years of dedicated research.  

About Nutrition Business Journal
Nutrition Business Journal (NBJ) is a leading research, publishing and consulting firm serving the nutrition, natural products and integrative healthcare industries. NBJ delivers industry intelligence via a monthly journal, detailed market research reports, data charts, consulting services and an annual invite-only executive leadership conference, The NBJ Summit.

About Penton
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Penton is a privately held company owned by MidOcean Partners and U.S. Equity Partners II, an investment fund sponsored by Wasserstein & Co., LP.

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