These last years are marked by a growing trend of healthy and natural products with an array of innovations that concern mostly botanical raw materials or plant substitutes to animal proteins.
Essentially observed in the field of food and beverages as evidenced once again at the International Food Exhibition (SIAL) last October, the market for food supplements is not left behind (1).
This has given a dominant place for plant-based material answering a need of innovation of the stakeholders and consumers animated by a triptych that are the new ways of consumption including its personalisation and especially its dimension of naturalness.
The new nutraceutical formats: sticks, health drinks, shots, mixture or powders to be reconstituted...
Previously limited to gelatine capsules, tablets and capsules, the world of food supplements is reinventing itself in order to provide the benefits of plants while adapting to emerging forms of consumption (vegetarianism, veganism, flexitarianism).
Start-ups and industrialists, sometimes from the food world, have developed new and attractive nutraceutical formats.
Indeed, knowing that one out of two people don’t finish their treatment (2) and consider that food supplements are associated with the medical sector, new supplements formulas, particularly liquid or powder, are available with an attractive design that improves observance, that being in due respect with a prescription or an objective.
Whether it is for the athlete in search of efficiency and energy or to promote health and well-being in general, the various types of food supplements have opened to new practical and very varied galenics:
- chewing gum,
- squares or bars,
- caps to be screwed on a bottle...
This new era of dietary supplements is not only due to innovative formats, but also to the way these supplements are taken. Single doses are favoured with single-dose formats in ready-to-drink products, capsules that combine two types of active ingredients in a single dose, or even small one-shot bottles to be consumed pure or diluted. The lifestyle and "de-medicalised" appearance of these nutraceuticals thus contributes to better observance through an attachment to the product or brand with notions of ecology, effectiveness and consumer trust.
The various vitamins, minerals and benefits are thus integrated into:
- functional drinks,
- straws or ribbons,
- chocolates with plants...
Spice-based shots and fruits are, for example, very popular for their many benefits, especially for strengthening the immune system. These fresh juices in miniature format contain antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties thanks to the ingredients used: ginger, lemon or cayenne pepper.
Nutra becomes tasty and "foodified" by moving from the medical field to that of pleasure and taste
Traditional stakeholders in the nutraceutical industry are inspired by the food world in terms of galenics, accelerating the ongoing transformation of the health supplement market, which is thus taking precedence over the pleasure dimension.
Food supplements are evolving in this direction and market players are increasingly turning to "food" and "beverage" trends.
Gummies represent a very popular form of food supplements, both for their lifestyle aspect, as they are easy to integrate into a routine based on its pleasant and colourful appearance. This very buoyant market has indeed experienced considerable growth of 211% between 2021 and 2022 (3).
Many brands have been inspired by this playful and appealing format, while others offer plant protein references to which superfood plants have been added for their nutritional virtues: acerola, chia seeds or acai berries. These new products come in powder form to be incorporated into meals and snacks as well as in drinks. It is thus possible to make your own formulation of food supplements in liquid form. Diluting or sprinkling natural active ingredients on food is also an innovation with a strong ecological and economical advantage based on it bulk or refill format.
Ranges of chewing gum with functional claims or chocolate squares containing melatonin to promote sleep have also been launched. Other innovations in the plant market include adaptogenic plant powders with natural antioxidants and prebiotics to be added to dishes, teas or smoothies. There are also formats that make it easier to ingest and take on the go, including sprays, trans-mucosal films and oils.
New stakeholders are appearing alongside the nutraceutical industry: the booming e-commerce (+25% sales in 2021 vs. 2020) (4) and recent start-ups called "DNVB" (Digital Native Vertical Brands) show the emergence of new profiles and consumption habits. By providing a personalised response to each consumer, these companies promote the quality of products with "vegan" label mentions and eco-responsible packaging, thus renewing their core target. Their objective is to cultivate a direct link of transparency and trust (5). Large food and cosmetics groups have also seized the flourishing sector of plant alternatives and food supplements, previously reserved for pharmaceutical laboratories.
Naturalness is the number 1 purchasing criteria for a food supplement
Naturalness and additive-free is one of the 5 criteria for purchasing a food supplement (6).
Indeed, the strong expectation of consumers is to integrate plant ingredients into their routine and to quickly integrate this into starting a new lifestyle. Maintaining good health without fear of harmful effects requires a search for naturalness and simple with healthy formulations.
The use of plants and their active ingredients corresponds to the vigilance concerning the composition of products. Consumers' attention is thus focused on botanical ingredients or on the majority of food supplements containing at least one plant species (7). The market players review their formulation in this sense and resort to the use of natural assets.
"Today, 64% of dietary supplements include at least one plant. The turnover of the category of Perfumed, Aromatic and Medicinal Plants (PAMP) has increased by + 85% in 25 years and the number of producers has increased by 25% in 10 years. 120 PAMP species are grown in France and 80% of PAMPs used by French industrials is imported." (8)
There is a strong demand for functional products: those that strengthen the immune system with superfoods, those that protect the microbiota with Kefir, kombucha or those that strengthen targeted memory for the elderly.
The natural active ingredient extracted from hemp, CBD, for example, is booming because it is used for its multiple virtues, from well-being to anxiety reduction and relaxation.
Developing customised dietary supplements according to one's needs (energy, serenity and immune system, cognitive health, reduction of fatigue) is the driving force behind the growing attraction of consumers for these new formats. Tailoring natural ingredients according to the desired health effects represents one of the levers of the market's revival, which not only attracts consumers' support but also their pride. Consumers recognise the efforts of market stakeholders to limit health risks and guarantee the safety and harmlessness of products. Protecting the active ingredients in ecological galenics, promoting bioavailability and optimising them while targeting effectiveness and observance are the criteria sought by the various nutraceutical market stakeholders.
However, the promise of a pleasurable and tasty product is just as important as the naturalness and "clean label" aspect (9). Healthy and energising foods are an essential priority for consumers.
Our Optifine® powders: natural solutions with colouring, taste, health and beneficial properties at the heart of nutraceutical innovation
Natural Origins accompanies you at every stage of your creations: from the selection of your botanical ingredients, to the evaluation of the ingredient in your recipes, to its validation, ensuring that your final product has the desired taste and the optimal texture for your consumers.
For your conventional galenics like gelatine capsule, tablets and capsules, we offer you our standardised or powdered nutra extracts.
In order to follow the trend and ensure your nutraceutical transition to new formats (sticks, sprays, shots, gummies, chocolate bars, chewing gums, teas, infusions...) Natural Origins offers you a real application solution with its Optifine® powders for these new galenics.
We offer you about twenty Optifine® powders references, including fifteen of organic quality (ginkgo, ginger, green tea, etc.). All of these plants are positioned in well-defined health areas (digestion, circulation, immunity, joints, etc.) while reassuring consumers that they want to consume products that are both good for the body and the mind.
Our Optifine® powders meet the nutritional needs and ethical choices of consumers through:
- health benefits,
- and sustainable development.
These 100% botanical low-processed powders preserve all the naturally present phytoactives. The fineness of the particles favours a homogeneous dispersion in the product, diffusing an authentic colour and flavour, specific to each plant.
Thanks to our Optifine® powders, you reveal your brand identity in an original, natural, reliable and effective galenic and you stand out on the innovative of nutraceutical product range.
Our "Taste Giving Extracts", Clean Label aromatic extract solutions are essential for flavouring your products in the most natural way possible. They include "ginger extract" for example and provide an intense taste of the plant at a low cost. They are therefore an excellent alternative to artificial flavours.
Another alternative to the new formats of food supplements, the "Nutridense" product range: macro-rich extracts and powders of plants (proteins, fibers...) and micronutrients (vitamin C, Magnesium...) that enrich your formulations. Some of our ingredients such as baobab can also replace carriers such as maltodextrin in view of featuring a Clean Label declaration.
Natural Origins accompanies you in this plant evolution through natural solutions adapted to the new challenges of the dietary supplements market and the needs of consumers.
Please feel free to contact us.
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(2) Etude menée par Incara Lab, publiée en novembre 2021
(3) GersData. La galénique sous toutes ses formes, dans tous ses états.
(4) Synadiet. Le marché des compléments alimentaires. 2021 vs 2020
(6) Harris Interactive pour Synadiet. Baromètre 2022 de la consommation de compléments alimentaires en France. Mars 2022