Upto 70% fitness supplements sold in Indian market are fake: Study

Sunday, December 06, 2015
India’s dietary supplement market may reach $4 bn mark by 2020

About 60-70 per cent of dietary supplements being sold across India are fake, counterfeit, unregistered and unapproved, besides it is extremely difficult to identify them, noted a recent ASSOCHAM-RNCOS joint study.

“Dietary supplements market in India is currently estimated at about $2 billion (bn) and is likely to almost double to $4 bn by 2020 thereby clocking a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of about 16 per cent during the course of next five years,” projected the study titled ‘Indian nutraceuticals, herbals & functional foods industry: Emerging on global map,’ conducted by The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) jointly with business consulting firm RNCOS.

“Vitamin and mineral supplements will form major areas of opportunities for nutraceuticals players in the coming years driven by rising demand from an evolving customer base with middle class population being the major consumers in this regard,” highlighted the ASSOCHAM-RNCOS study.

As per current market segmentation, vitamins and minerals account for lion’s share of about 40 per cent in Indian dietary supplements market followed by herbal supplements (30 per cent), probiotic (10 per cent), omega-3 fatty acids (five per cent) and proteins, amino acids and other essential elements together account for the remaining share of 15 per cent.

“Small committees should be built at block levels to check the prevalence of counterfeit products in the market and immediately discard them as they bring bad name to the industry,” suggested the study.

Dietary supplements (mainly vitamins and minerals) are primarily produced by pharmaceutical companies and are predominantly prescription-based, recommended by physicians, nutritionists, gym instructors and others who act as major influencers.

Higher purchasing power has made people more health conscious and prompted them to adopt a healthy diet routine completed with consumption of nutritional supplements.

Dietary supplements are sold in many forms like tablets, capsules, soft gels, gel caps, liquids and powders. These products are readily available to consumers through chemist shops and online channels.

According to a survey conducted by the ASSOCHAM Social Development Foundation across top Indian cities in 2012, about 78 per cent adolescents in urban India daily consumed dietary supplements in one or the other forms with a view to enhance their physical appearance, improve immunity and increase their energy levels undermining the various side-effects of such supplements.
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