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Dietary supplements industry is doing better than most: NOW Foods president

By Stephen Daniells , 05-Jan-2012
Last updated the 05-Jan-2012 at 17:59 GMT

Dietary supplements industry is doing better than most: NOW Foods president

The dietary supplements industry is doing better than many consumer brand industries, despite issues such as NDIs, says the new president of NOW Foods.

Jim Emme, the newly appointed president of NOW Foods, told NutraIngredients-USA that the strong market for dietary supplements was not just in the US, but globally.

The markets around the world are opening up, he said. “Populations are aging around the world, and we’ve got more than double digit growth in the EU and South America.”

Despite such a positive outlook, it’s clear that the industry does face challenges, particularly from the hotly debated NDI draft guidance. So what does Emme make of the industry comments to the NDI draft guidance? “My own view is that there are good things coming out of CRN, and Loren Israelsen at UNPA has a good point of view on this.”

If it isn’t broken…

Having come through the ranks, he knows the NOW business inside out, and it seems like business as usual: “We’re experiencing a lot of success, particularly in the natural channel,” he said. “I’m here to further develop and implement our long-term strategy.”

And that strategy is well-known in the industry: The NOW Foods business model is to produce high quality products at affordable prices, and this has seen some other companies to try to copy the model themselves.

“I think it’s more difficult to copy our model now,” he said. “There is a higher barrier of entry due to costs associated with the regulatory demands [like GMP compliance].

“But there is some pretty solid competition out there.”

Sustainability

In addition to a very lean manufacturing process, the company is proud of its energy management and sustainability schemes as a means of reducing its environmental burden and driving down costs. Indeed, the company has received four Illinois Governor’s Sustainability Awards.

“Sustainability and energy management can pay for itself,” said Emme, “and we pass these savings on to the consumer.”

Leadership

The man who Emme replaces, Al Powers, will continue to serve as CEO of NOW Health Group, with all US and Canada business units reporting to him.

“These changes provide a better organizational structure to support our continued rate of high growth and sustain our leadership position within the industry,” said Powers.

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