An edible product containing the basic nutritional value of food and an added medicinal benefit is referred as Nutraceutical. Nutraceuticals is also referred as a specially treated food, vitamin, mineral, and herb that can be consume (eat or drink) for improving the health. The word was coined by Stephen De Felice, founder and chairman of the Foundation for Innovation in Medicine, Cranford, New Jersey and is a blend of the words “nutrition” and “pharmaceuticals”.
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Urbanization and advent of technology has brought about a steep rise in lifestyle related diseases in the last three decades. This has made consumers strive for a diet that enhances energy in a holistic way. Thus, increased demand of healthy diet options with the rise in lifestyle-related diseases has spur the Nutraceuticals market demand. Furthermore, supply of natural food with added medicinal/health related benefits are expected to meet the demand. Since, three quarters of the world population is still dependent on the natural products for medicinal purposes, according to a report published by WHO, a combination of food and medicine--Nutraceuticals have become the ultimate health promoting diet. Nutraceuticals have become an umbrella term that encompasses functional food, dietary supplements, sports drinks, functional ingredients and medically formulated foods etc.
Nutraceuticals comprise of two main categories of products-
• Functional food/beverages- These types of foods/non-alcoholic drinks yield physiological benefits, possibly lessening chronic, commonly encountered disease risks or are otherwise beneficial to health. Examples of such functional foods/beverages are omega-3 enriched eggs, ready to drink tea, Yakut probiotic drink etc.
• Dietary Supplements- These products are meant to add a “dietary ingredient” to supplement the diet, which may otherwise not be consumed in sufficient quantities. Examples of such dietary supplements are Vitamins, Amino Acids, herbs, Minerals etc.
Another factor enhancing the Nutraceuticals market is conscious consumers believing in curbing possibilities of illness at an early stage and thus resort to healthier diet options. Increased costs of healthcare, less number of people covered by health insurance, increase in chronic conditions like diabetes and heart diseases, obesity or under nourishment has brought about a preference of natural products over artificially manufactured products as a preventive measure.
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The major stakeholders in the growth include the fitness instructors, dieticians and general practitioners. Since diet holds a very important role in building physiological stamina and also recovery from chronic illnesses, the professionals play a key role in inspiring fitness enthusiast and patients to use the products.
In theOfficial Gazette 2016 on 23rd December 2016, the FSSAI notified the Food Safety and Standards (Health Supplements, Food for Special Dietary Use, Nutraceuticals, Food for Special Medical Purpose and Functional & Novel Food) Regulations. A broad category of foods will be covered by these regulations which will entail detailed requirements about composition, claims, labels of the product.
Following are the above mentioned foods:
•Foods for Special Dietary Use and Medical purpose
•Foods containing Probiotics and Prebiotics
•Specialty Food containing plants or botanicals
Permitted forms of manufacturing and selling Nutraceuticals are tablets, capsules and syrups. Since, Nutraceuticals are a combination of added medicinal/dietary products along with food, therefore the tablets, syrups and capsules manufactured for the same should not just include vitamins and minerals but also contains essential food basis. Despite the focus on the medicinal values, usage of Hormones, steroids or psychotropic ingredients is not permitted in Nutraceuticals’ formulation.
The Nutraceuticals market is majorly segmented as product type, product form and geographically. The product segment includes functional food, functional beverages, dietary supplements and for personal care. Furthermore, the functional food market is categorized as Probiotics Fortified Food, Omega Fatty Acid Fortified Food, Branded Ionized Salt, Branded Wheat Flour and Others; functional food includes Energy Drinks, Sports Drinks, Fortified Juices, Fortified Dairy Beverages and Others; Dietary supplements is also segregated as Proteins Supplements, Vitamins & Minerals, Herbal Supplements (Ayurvedic extracts, plant extracts, algal extracts, phytochemicals) and Other (fatty acids, fiber). The product form segment is further segregated into powder, liquid, tablet and capsules.
North America regional market is assumed to be a mature market owing to the rising geriatric population with high healthcare costs in the region. Rapidly growing the product demand in emerging countries has led to the led to the expansion of the retail sector in China, Malaysia, and India. Increasing government support is also projected to fuel the demand across the region.
Nutraceuticals is at an intersection of food and pharmaceutical industry. Consequently, the market is being catered by companies that have a strong hold on the Food & Beverages market as well as pharmaceutical companies aiming at preventive products for ailments. Some global companies ventured in the field are Amway, GSK, Kellogg’s, Coca Cola, Pepsico, Abbott, Sanofi, Dabur, Himalayas and Unilever.
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