Nutraceuticals are bioactive compounds with properties beneficial to health that are often concentrated extracts from fruits, herbs, seeds, specific lipids and vegetables. Nutraceuticals are often used to fortify food products, creating functional foods, or can be taken as supplements. Pharmaceuticals, on the other hand, are bioactive compounds intended for use in the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease. Pharmaceuticals are most often new chemical entities.
Well known nutraceuticals include essential fatty acids such as omega-3 oils, probiotics, prebiotics, plant sterols, botanicals, superfruit extracts, carotenoid antioxidants and soy protein/isoflavones. Over the past few years, most of these nutraceutical ingredients have made good progress in the marketplace and are now available in a wide range of foods and drinks, as well as supplements. Some have also been developed as pharmaceuticals.
The consumer environment is driving growth in the nutraceuticals market. Over the past decade, consumers have become more concerned for their health and are increasingly inclined to self-medicate. Healthcare providers, too, are keen to shift some of the burden of healthcare costs to individuals and recognize that functional foods may provide alternatives to medications. These factors are reflected in the current market for ingredients in the health and nutrition sector, which was estimated to be worth US$4 billion in 2009.
Key features of this report
- Identify leading companies at the forefront of the nutraceuticals industry who will drive the market for a new generation of “value added” health products.
- Provide case studies of these leading companies in the finished goods (foods and drinks), ingredients and other raw materials, or pharmaceutical sectors.
- Analyze the key trends and issues confronting the different industry sectors at this time.
- Review the backgrounds, discovery strategies and business models of new and innovative entrants to this marketplace.
Scope of this report
- Identify the companies leading the field in the nutraceuticals industry from across a range of different market sectors
- Review their key products and the ways in which these products are being marketed to consumers
- Learn more about the increased efforts of these companies to establish the health benefits of their products in clinical trials
- Identify innovative companies and discover the potential of their various approaches for discovery and marketing novel nutraceuticals
Key Market Issues
- The food market is changing: Over the past decade, consumers have become more concerned for their health and are increasingly inclined to self-medicate. Healthcare providers, too, are keen to shift some of the burden of healthcare costs to individuals and recognize that functional foods may provide alternatives to medications. These factors are reflected in the current market for ingredients in the health and nutrition sector, which was estimated to be worth US$4billion in 2009.
- Nutraceuticals and pharmaceuticals are related in that both are types of compound that demonstrate bioactive properties. Nutraceuticals are substances that are extracted from foods and are used either to fortify other food products in order to enhance their nutritional properties or are taken as dietary supplements in the form of pills, capsules of soft-gels. The clinical evidence behind a nutraceutical products varies widely; some have been tested with pharmaceutical rigor to demonstrate properties beneficial to health, while for other the evidence to support such claims is slim.
Key findings from this report
- New food and drink regulations were introduced in Europe in 2006 and have been generating uncertainty and frustration throughout the industry. The European Food Safety Authority is processing more than 4,000 generic health claims, as well as health claims for emerging and proprietary science or disease risk reduction. The regulator has rejected a large number of the applications reviewed to date (September 2009) and has missed a number of deadlines, suggesting that the overall process may take much longer than expected.
- FDA regulations are generally regarded as less stringent than those in the EU. Nevertheless, they come under criticism for not allowing companies to use in their product labeling relevant data generated in a clinical setting that links the food with a health benefit. Some of the smaller, innovative companies reviewed for this report are developing their business models with this fact in mind.
Key questions answered
- Which companies are the market leaders in the nutraceuticals industry, as identified from a review of finished goods companies, raw materials manufacturers and pharmaceutical companies?
- What are the key products of these companies and how do they exemplify the future direction of the nutraceutical industry?
- How are the market leaders approaching the need for research to back their products with health claims that are understandable by the consumer?