Let’s face it—so far, 2020 has been an exhausting year. Our already hectic lifestyles have been upended by a global pandemic and economic downturn, unlike the world’s ever experienced. If there’s one thing we can all agree upon, our daily pick-me-up in the form of a cup of coffee or an energy supplement has never been more needed or appreciated. The current situation reflects a broader trend; to keep up, be more productive, and have enough energy left over at the end of the day. Consumers are looking for strategies to fight physical and mental fatigue. As a result, they are increasingly turning to supplements and functional foods to meet their needs.
This is why experts suggest the market for healthy energy will continue to be one of the largest and most successful categories in the supplement space. Nutrition Business Journal (NBJ) reports the energy category is worth about $4.3 billion with continued growth forecast through 2022.
After overall health and wellness, energy is the primary reason consumers take a dietary supplement, according to the CRN 2019 Consumer Survey on Dietary Supplements. Nutrition Business Journal’s 2019 Condition Specific Report cites Millennials are especially seeking energy support‚ citing “lack of energy” as one of the leading health issues they’re looking to manage.
The category is also evolving to be more benefits-driven beyond just “energy.” And as this market continues to grow and change here’s a countdown of our top five trends spurring success and innovation in the energy supplement space.
1. Mental Energy & Mood
The concept of mindfulness and emphasis on mental health has been a growing trend in the wellness space. Consumers are looking for solutions to stay energized and balanced as concerns of stress, anxiety, and mental health are rising. Amid our increasingly demanding and complicated lifestyles, consumer interest in the concept of “mental energy” is growing. It’s not just a caffeine jolt consumers are craving, but rather, a sustained and controlled release of energy that helps to assist focus, alertness, and performance through the day. OmniActive’s Consumer Insights shows that after the first cup of coffee, consumers are looking for alternative products to keep them charged throughout the day. Mental energy also relates to mood health, another top-of-mind concern. A healthy source of steady energy can help offset fatigue and promote motivation, which can go a long way for your frame of mind.
2. Personalization Matters
Consumers are looking for tailor-made products to support their individual needs—especially when it comes to their health. Personalization in the supplement space isn’t new, but when it comes to energy, consumers are looking for customized solutions beyond a mere caffeine buzz.
Products speaking to specific energy needs are better positioned for success, according to NBJ. For example, products targeting needs like “office performance” or “sustained alertness” help solidify the context of the formula and better assure shoppers that this is something that can help them.
3. Clean & Ethical
When energy drinks first hit the market, they were packed with sugar, artificial flavors, and unrecognizable ingredients. Today, health-conscious consumers are demanding high-quality, naturally sourced, sustainable ingredients, that are safe and effective.
As the energy category becomes more mainstream, products are being reformulated to be more sustainable and appeal to the lifestyles and values of consumers.
Supplement users also want something eco-friendly to meet their ethical values, and you better believe they are paying attention. Market research from Nielsen suggests 81% of consumers feel strongly that companies should help improve the environment, while 73% said they would change their consumption habits to reduce environmental impact. This sentiment was most prevalent among the highly sought-after Millennial demographic.
4. Cognition & Focus
Mind enhancing “nootropic” formulas are growing in prominence, and there’s an argument to be made for energy enhancing products supporting cognitive function and attention.
Formulas that increase mental function and performance—without the distractions of jittery side-effects or the caffeine-crash—are poised for success. From students to white-collar workers, there’s a lot of folks looking for a mental boost. These high-achieving consumers are also more likely to favor formulas that have clean, recognizable ingredients.
5. Brain Fuel for Sport & Play
Focus and alertness are becoming just as important as physical capabilities for active consumers. Gamers and gym-goers are looking to operate on a higher level and are seeking out formulas to not only aid endurance but also focus their mind.
E-gaming is a sport where competitive advantage is almost exclusively determined by cognitive performance but has the same requirements as other sports – endurance for campaigns that can last for hours and recovery from prolonged play. And gamers are beginning to wake up to the fact that there are better alternatives to a steady diet of caffeine, high-sugar foods, and instant energy fixes to keep them competitive.
Meanwhile, the fitness and athletic space is a huge, mainstream audience that will keep the energy category growing. NBJ found sports-focused formulas made up 42.7% of the market share for energy supplements in 2018. The “fit” consumers demographic, defined as those exercising 30 minutes three times a week (or more), makes up approximately 40% of the U.S. population. A survey by HealthFocus international found that 72% of these consumers claimed to always/usually choose foods to help improve their energy level.
About Xtenergy & enXtra
OmniActive Health Technologies’ offers two clean, scientifically validated ingredients that are aligned with these key trends and perfectly suited to help product formulators meet the demands of discerning energy supplement users: Xtenergy and enXtra.
Sourced from green coffee beans (Coffea robusta), Xtenergy provides sustained, clean energy with natural caffeine. Xtenergy’s extended-release formula is designed with the energy consumer in mind: a steady release of caffeine to support nootropic benefits (alertness, mood, and feeling less tired) without unwanted side effects like jitters or tenderness.
With applications ranging from cognitive health to sports nutrition, enXtra is a proprietary extract of Alpinia galanga, part of the ginger and turmeric family commonly used in Asian cooking. A caffeine-free alternative, this natural botanical formula is unique because it offers same-day benefits for mental alertness and focus.