US women could be easing off supplements, says report

By Lorraine Heller

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Women, Dietary supplement, Dietary mineral

Women appear to be leaving the US dietary supplement category in
significant numbers, according to survey results released last
week.

Market research and consultancy firm TABS Group said that 66 percent of US women today report using vitamins and supplements, which represents a 13 percent drop since 2005. The firm, which based its findings on an online survey conducted earlier this month, said that the drop in usage was isolated to women aged 30-59. "The survey did not address specifically why so many left the market for Nutritional Supplements, however, we do find that they corroborate trends we have been tracking in the marketplace,"​ said TABS Group founder and president, Kurt Jetta."Most notably, we've seen sluggish category trends, sharp declines in sales of Women's Supplements like soy and black cohosh, and declines in calcium sales, which skew heavily towards women concerned about osteoporosis." ​The latest survey, which reflects a similar one conducted by the group in 2005, questioned 1,000 US consumers on their use of dietary supplements and vitamins. According to TABS, manufacturers and retailers have also reduced their marketing and merchandising support behind the concept of women's nutrition during the past two years. This, it said, adds to "compelling evidence that there is a significant category-wide cost to the reduction of this support.""It appears that both women's herbs and calcium have strategic importance to this category beyond just the sales of those particular products." ​ However, when it comes to men, the survey results indicated that the number of male consumers reporting supplement usage has remained a steady 66 percent between 2005 and 2007. The consultancy group has not yet published full findings of its latest study, which examines the wider market for dietary supplements and vitamins in the US.

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