Winter 2012 Supplement Manufacturing Trends

Winter 2012 Supplement Manufacturing Trends

Winter 2012 Supplement Manufacturing Trends


Typically during this time of year, consumers travel to their local grocery stores and pharmacies in search of nutritional supplements that will help support their immune systems.

If you’re a supplement business owner and are looking to manufacture a line of products that contain immune-supporting ingredients that your customers will be looking for to help them feel their very best, our team can assist you! Below are our suggestions on what the winter 2012 supplement manufacturing trends will be, as well as the ingredients you should consider including in your winter line of supplement products.

Don’t catch the bug! Immune health continues to be top priority for consumers and while experts suggest Echinacea, elderberry and beta-glucans for immune system support, there are a number of well-researched immune-supporting ingredients that you may want to include in your formulations.

  • Echinacea – According to the Natural Foods Merchandiser, Echinacea and probiotics are the best ingredients for promoting immunity. Sale of Echinacea was valued at $21 million in the food, drug and mass (FDM) markets and $9.3 million in the natural channel according to SPINS (a market research company based in Schaumburg, Ill.). 1
  • Elderberry – According to SPINS, sales of products containing elderberry was valued at $6.3 million in the natural channel. 2-3
  • Beta-glucan is a well-researched immune health ingredient derived from a strain of yeast known to help stimulate the activity of white-blood immune cells. 4
  • Pre and probiotic formulas have been shown to support immune health. 5 A combination of probiotic strains (two Bifidobacteria, one Lactobacillus) and the prebiotic fiber, fructooligosaccharides (FOS), were shown to improve overall health when compared to a placebo. Probiotics sales totaled more than $1 billion in the FDM channel (35 percent increase from the previous year) and $310 million in the natural channel (10.4 percent increase from the previous year). 6
  • Goldenseal and astralagus extract both have health supporting properties. It is known to have an effect on mucous membranes of the respiratory tract and in combination with other herbs, may help support immune health. 7
  • Wild indigo is considered to be especially beneficial for supporting upper respiratory health. 8
  • Other ingredients known to help strengthen the immune system include Vitamins C, D and E, zinc, apple fiber, green tea. 9-12

Popular delivery systems: tablets, capsules, lozenges, liquids and herbal teas

Keeping skin healthy. Cold air holds less moisture and when you turn on the heat indoors you make the air inside drier than the air outside. This typically leads to skin concerns. Nutrients can play a role in maintaining beautiful skin, even during the winter months.

  • Omega-3 fatty acids help to bring blood and oxygen to the skin. This stimulates the production of new skin cells replacing the ones that dry up and slough off during this season. Some studies also show that omega-3 fatty acids may help protect the skin. 13
  • Vitamin A, an antioxidant vitamin, is also called the skin vitamin. Both topical application and oral intake help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, increase collagen production, and help keep skin hydrated. 14
  • Vitamin E can help protect skin, especially when combined with vitamin C. 15

Popular delivery systems: tablets and capsules

Winter months and Vitamin D levels. Shorter days, longer nights lead to less exposure to sunlight. Those living in higher altitudes should consider Vitamin D supplementation to help adequately meet their Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) of Vitamin D. Vitamin D is also a popular single-entity supplement and ongoing research on the multiple functions of Vitamin D and increasing awareness continues to produce a high demand amongst consumers. 16 According to Nutrition Business Journal, Vitamin D sales were up by 30 percent in 2010 reaching $550 million. 17

Popular delivery systems: tablets, capsules, chewables, liquids and sublingual tablets

Beat the winter blues! Many people experience the blues during winter months. Seasonal Affective Disorders (SAD) affect about 20 percent of Americans, according to Dr. Norman Rosenthal, a world-renowned psychiatrist and author of more than 200 scholarly publications and seven books on the subject.

Besides concerns about immune health, many Americans still face job insecurities and financial struggles. We, therefore, see consumers spending more on stress, anxiety and mood supplements. It’s estimated that 43 percent of the people who experience mood fluctuations use some type of nutritional and/or herbal therapy. 18 This may include the supplementary intake of omega-3 fatty acids, Vitamin B complex, amino acid 5-hydroxytryptophan, or 5-HTP, passion flower, theanine (green tea), Vitamin D and other herbal applications. Studies also show that St. John’s Wort to have healthy mood supporting effects. 19

Popular delivery systems: tablets, capsules, herbal teas.

Watch your heart during winter! When temperatures drop, the blood thickens and scientists believe this may impact heart health during the winter months. Heart health ingredients may include:

  • Antioxidants such as green tea, cocoa, resveratrol are known to have cardio-protective effects. 20-22
  • Omega-3 fatty acids are well-known for promoting cardiovascular health. Marine or plant-based omega-3 sources can be used for manufacturing supplements. 23
  • Ginkgo biloba, fish oils, primrose oil, cayenne pepper may help strengthen the circulatory system. 24 Ginkgo biloba was listed as one of the top-selling herbal singles of 2010 in the food, drug and mass market channel, according to IRI, a market research company with headquarters in Chicago, IL. 25

Popular delivery systems: tablets and capsules

Joint Comfort. The cold, wintry weather can affect joint comfort.

  • Glucosamine and chondroitin combinations have been well-researched for the ability to improve joint health. Herbs like boswellin help to support joint comfort. 26-28
  • Other ingredients include grape seed extracts and ginkgo biloba that nutritionally support blood circulation.

According to Frost & Sullivan (a business research and consulting firm with over 40 global offices), an expanding aging population and increased consumer awareness is driving the growth of the bone and joint health ingredients market. 29

Popular delivery systems: tablets and capsules

There is an increased amount of fine pollen grains in the air. Because the air is dry, winter is also the month when more dust mites grow on pillows, mattress, carpets, coats, sweaters, curtains, soft toys, etc. Even Christmas decorations might harbor molds, allergens and dust mites during storage.

  • Herbs and nutrients that may help support a healthy immune system include Vitamin C, N-acetyl cysteine (NAC), nettle, lycopene, magnesium, quercetin, glucomannan, licorice root, pinebark and butterbur extracts. 30

Popular delivery systems: tablets, capsules and liquids.

Boost overall health. Everyone knows that a balanced diet will help boost your chances for good health during the winter months. These include multi-vitamin supplements with formulations that include vitamin C, iron, vitamin A and selenium, protein powders, antioxidant supplements, whole food supplements, etc.

Contact Our Production Specialists for More Information

More consumers are making natural supplement choices as evidenced by its soaring sales – from $1.9 billion in 1980 to $36 billion in 2010, according to the 2011 edition of Natural Foods Merchandiser’s Market Overview.

For more information on how you can enhance your product lineup this winter to effectively and efficiently meet the health needs of your customers, call (855) 492-7388 to speak to one of our Production Specialists. Or if you’re ready with your requirements, you can submit your request to receive a free quote from us in 48 hours or less.


1. Natural Foods Merchandiser


3. Natural Foods Merchandiser.

4. Natural Foods Merchandiser.

5. Ibid.

6. Immunity Supplements Still on Top, Natural Foods Merchandiser




10. Ibid.

11. Ann Nutr Metab. 2006;50(2):85-94. Epub 2005 Dec 21.






17. Ibid.

18. March 1, 2009, Nutraceuticals World.








26. J Athl Train. 2001 Oct-Dec; 36(4): 413-419.

27. Osteoarthritis Cartilage. 2010 Jun;18 Suppl 1:S7-11. Epub 2010 Apr 27.

28. Planta Med. 2006 Oct;72(12):1100-16.


30. May 7, 2008, Natural Products Marketplace, Steve Myers.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>