Regulatory change boosting emerging supplement markets, says IADSA

Food supplement regulation changes in many markets across the globe are fostering supplements industry growth in emerging economies, according to the International Alliance of Dietary/Food Supplements Associations (IADSA).

Easing of regulatory restrictions and closer working arrangements with governments had seen markets such as Romania and Turkey achieve buoyant sales in the past decade, said IADSA global market analyst, Peter Zambetti. He noted that while developed markets such as the European Union, the UK and the US are growing at an average of four to six per cent annually, emerging markets are notching an impressive annual growth rate of 17 per cent.

"The global supplement market is currently valued at $50 billion, and in general emerging markets are growing much faster than developed markets," Zambetti told more than 200 attendees at a recently held conference in Turkey. "In 1997 Turkey's dietary supplement market was only $8.1million, whereas in 2006 it was valued at $195 million — an average annual growth of 23 per cent over the last 10 years." Romania had grown 20 per cent growth in three years.

Other speakers at the conference included European Union head of food law Basil Mathioudakis, and Dr Hans Verhagen from the European Food Safety Authority NDA panel. "Overall the event was a huge success, and we were especially pleased with the positive attitude of the Turkish government towards our sector," said Muge Cakir, executive director of Turkish food supplements association, BesDesDer. "Turkey's food supplement market is booming — in the last two years the sector has doubled. There are still discrepancies that exist with some products which we believe should be regulated as foods but are still classed as drugs, but we are constantly working to address these issues and increase the credibility of the sector."

Nutrition Business Journal statistics reveal other emerging countries demonstrating strong growth include Poland, Russia, China, Thailand and Brazil.

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