Consumer Confidence In Dietary Supplements Remains Steady, Annual Survey Results Show

Consumer confidence in dietary supplements has remained high this year, with 81 percent of American adults indicating that they are confident in the safety, quality and effectiveness of dietary supplements compared to 80 percent last year, according to a new survey conducted by Ipsos-Public Affairs for the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN). Confidence levels in dietary supplements have been on a gradual rise, with 79 percent of American adults indicating a favorable level of confidence in dietary supplements in 2006.

According to the results from the 2008 CRN Consumer Survey on Dietary Supplements, (formerly known as the CRN Consumer Confidence Survey), while confidence in dietary supplements remains steady, the on-line survey showed a slightly lower percentage of adults who label themselves as supplement users, with 64 percent classifying themselves as such. In 2007 and 2006, 68 percent and 66 percent of Americans identified themselves as supplement users, respectively.

However, there is good news for the industry. The survey results also demonstrated a rise in the percentage of supplement consumers who take a variety of supplements regularly—48 percent in 2008, versus 42 percent in 2007 and 34 percent in 2006.

“We’re encouraged both that consumers who take supplements are demonstrating an interest in a wider variety of products and are more committed to a supplement regimen,” said Judy Blatman, senior vice president, communications, CRN. Ms. Blatman added, “The multivitamin remains the cornerstone product for our industry with 82 percent of supplement users taking a multivitamin, but consumers are clearly looking at the benefits of other products too, like fish oil supplements and calcium.”

Adding to the positive news, a full 85 percent of those surveyed further indicated that they believe vitamin and mineral supplements are safe, the same figure that was reported in 2007; similarly, 72 percent agreed that herbal supplements are safe, with 70 percent reporting that belief last year.

“The self-regulatory programs that this industry is engaging in, along with emerging science that supports the value of supplements, are vital to the industry’s reputation, and to consumer confidence,” said Steve Mister, president and CEO, CRN. “We’re gratified to see that consumer confidence in our industry’s products continues to remain strong.”

The 2008 CRN Consumer Survey on Dietary Supplements, formerly known as the CRN Consumer Confidence Survey, was conducted August 20-25, 2008 by Ipsos Public Affairs and funded by CRN. The survey was conducted on-line and included a national sample of 2,013 adults aged 18 and older from Ipsos’ U.S. on-line panel. The survey has been conducted annually since 2000, with a migration from telephone to the internet beginning in 2005. The survey was weighted to reflect the actual U.S. adult population with an estimated margin of error of +/-2.2 percentage points.

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