We asked industry thought leaders to share their predictions for 2017. Here's what Erica Bryers, chief marketing officer and cofounder of supplements company Ora Organic, had to say.
Increasing focus on isolated nutrients
We're seeing more and more customers interested in the benefits of isolated nutrients like DHA, vitamin D3 or specific strains of probiotics. Omega-3s are traditionally prescribed to men over the age of 50 to improve cardiovascular health, but the relatively young "biohacker" community is starting to educate themselves on the brain health benefits of this nutrient and thus transforming the market and prompting more research.
There seems to be a shift forming away from "catch-all" preventive supplements and instead looking toward very user-specific needs such as improving memory, or getting the vitamin D I know I need because I'm hardly ever in the sun. For so long the habitual nature of taking a magic pill to fortify our bodies has been the norm, and while that fortification is still very important, it's great to see such a rise in consumer education and research that shows which nutrients can serve a specific purpose—everyone has different needs, after all! We plan to launch a vitamin D isolate product next year (that will be tasty) and another omega-3 SKU to aid with child brain development.
This one is a biggie for us. We believe nutrition can be doing more for the Earth as well as for humans. There are many sustainable ways to source the nutrients our bodies need—omega-3s from microalgae, for example, or plant-based proteins. Factory farming is one of the leading causes of global warming, and that's something we'd like to see eliminated from the supplement chain in the future. We plan on doing our part to educate consumers about how products like ours are made sustainably, what impact they have on the environment in comparison to the norm, and how we can all help Mother Earth with more sustainable options and packaging. There are also some exciting packaging initiatives for retail we're working on that are more than just recyclable. Think plantable…
The spray is here to stay!
Thanks to Chef Ron Chang, our omega-3 spray has been a total hit and will be hitting the retail shelves next year with MOM's Organic Market and a few other natural grocers on the East Coast. The flavor has been a treat with kids and certainly made a lot of parents' lives easier—it helps that it doesn't contain sugar or artificial sweeteners that gummies use. We'll be seeing more sprays from Ora Organic in the future with delicious organic flavors by Ron Chang.
Editor's note: Ora won the NEXTY Editor's Choice Award for Best New Supplement at Natural Products Expo East 2016.