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Beyond caffeine: Alternative energy boosters

2 commentsBy Annie-Rose Harrison-Dunn , 15-Oct-2013
Last updated on 15-Oct-2013 at 16:18 GMT2013-10-15T16:18:49Z

Euromonitor analyst looks at what the future of the energy supplement market looks like beyond caffeine

Euromonitor analyst looks at what the future of the energy supplement market looks like beyond caffeine

As consumer perceptions of caffeine shift and the threat of more market regulation looms, companies are scrambling to find the next blockbuster to cater to demand for energy-boosting products, says an analyst.

Euromonitor International consumer health analyst, Chris Schmidt, suggests that companies should do more to capitalise on the increasing consumer interest in caffeine substitutes following a growing unease among both consumers and regulators over the possible negative effects of consuming too much caffeine.

According to Euromonitor International’s most recent health and wellness data, global sales of energy boosting products – foods and beverages positioned primarily around energy boosting claims – grew by 12% to US$29.1bn (€21.44bn) in 2012, from which energy drinks account for an impressive 88% chunk of retail sales.

Within this global energy drinks category the vast majority of products sold use caffeine as the primary energy ingredient, while the rest use mixtures of vitamins and herbal extracts.

What’s in a name?

In an analyst insights blog post Schmidt said that there is a growing consumer perception that caffeine is unnatural and potentially dangerous. “Companies – particularly those operating in the health and wellness and better-for-you segments – are increasingly positioning ingredients like green tea extract, green coffee bean extract, guarana, and yerba mate as powerful, natural sources of energy,” he wrote.

The common misconception among consumers is that these forms of caffeine are somehow inherently different to that which is found in coffee or caffeinated energy drinks has led to skyrocketing sales of products containing these alternatives, Schmidt says.

Looking elsewhere

Among the energy-boosting alternatives, Schmidt outlines vitamin B and herbal or traditional ingredients like ginseng as good opportunities.

“B vitamin products have been gaining steam in a number of markets, where savvy producers have jumped on positioning them as standalone energy supplements. Driven by monster growth in the US (40% from 2007 to 2012), which accounts for roughly half of all retail value sales worldwide, the global B vitamin category topped US$3.3 billion in 2012,” Schmidt explained.

Global supplement sales of the folk remedy ginseng also shone through totalling more than US$3.1bn (€2.29bn) in 2012, pushed largely by Asian markets like South Korea and China.

Several multinational pharmaceutical manufacturers like including Bayer AG, Boehringer Ingelheim GmbH and Sanofi have invested in herbal/traditional medicine recently in order to tap into this potential for alternative energy and libido-boosting additives.

Schmidt predicts that this trend will accelerate in the mid-term, a pattern which could see some lesser known herbal and botanical ingredients moving into the energy supplement limelight.

The analyst outlines ingredients like goji berry – referred to as a “super fruit” in the US and currently being investigated as a possible energy ingredient by PepsiCo – and ayurvedic ingredients (traditional medicine native to India) like ashwagandha (Indian ginseng).

Shifting to protein

He said that protein also held potential beyond its lean muscle mass association. “As a macronutrient, it also has the ability to provide sustained energy with less advertising baggage than carbohydrates and fats,” he explained.

Schmidt said that the separate protein supplements category – tracked under vitamins and dietary supplements – saw very strong growth in 2012 with global sales growing by 9% annually to US$1.8bn (€1.33bn).

“A big part of that growth has been a renewed marketing push by leading players, focusing not on protein’s role in muscle synthesis, but rather its ability to promote a feeling of satiety while providing meaningful, sustained energy,” he explained.

This is part of a push forward for protein supplements with a focus on their mainstream, energy functionality. He said that a growing consumer association of protein with natural energy will contribute to the impressive 7% annual growth forecasted by Euromonitor International across protein supplements and sports nutrition protein products.

Recent examples of this might be Kellogg’s Breakfast to Go and MaxiNutrition Protein Milk from GlaxoSmithKline which are positioned around providing protein-fuelled, all-day energy in a convenient format. 

2 comments (Comments are now closed)

The Best Source of Alternative Energy

Human beings always defy to live their lives under the conditions of nature-given. Since we acquire the brain that is so complex that we would be able to manipulate it in order to obtain the preferred way of life regardless of any nature-given conditions. We have conquered the most effective conditions to life such as the harsh climate in some particular region on earth. Human beings can manage to inhibit anywhere around the globe. Other creatures have to adapt from their DNA in order to transform their bodies to be suitable to such an environment. That can take millions of years. Why human beings can settle down to live anywhere in just one generation? Because we have such a complex brain that can manipulate things around us. In order to inhabit in every region on this planet regardless of the conditions of the habitats.
Humans build the structure to dwell in from variety of materials for their comfort and existence. The materials may have come from different sources such as the trees, elements underground, sand, stones and so on.
All these materials require energy to operate the tools or create heat to alter them to be the finished materials in the process. Ironically, We also need energy to keep our dwelling warm in winter and cool in summer along with household appliances to be operated. They all need energy to work for our well being. An energy allows us to choose the lifestyle that we prefer. So it becomes an important part of our lives. We cannot live on comfortably in any given time without it.
There are two methods to obtain this energy in the form of electricity. One method is to burn fossil deposits such as crude oil, coal and convert heat into electricity. Our planet has the ample supply of fossil deposits at the present time but they will be depleted. So far, nobody can predict when that will happen. The other method is called "green energy" such as windmill, solar power and water dam along with some other green energy methods such as ocean waves, geothermal and so on. Green energy is clean and good for all lives to live naturally but all of them come with the conditions or restrictions when to yield electricity and when not being able to. Most of them can yield a minuscule amount of energy. All of them can supply the energy up to 1 percent of the total energy consumption we need. The rest is taken care by the first method. Which will carry on consuming limited natural resources. In addition, this method emits the heat and pollution into our atmosphere Which contributes to the cause of global warming.
Ironically, we have nothing to rely on going into the future. Moreover, we increase the rate of energy consumption by increasing the population. Not only that we bring in new lives but also multiply them on every new generation. The existing ones are prone to live longer due to advanced technology. That means we consume the limited natural resources progressively to obtain the energy for the increasing numbers of population. It is obvious that these resources will be depleted one day. The crux of this matter is, what the later generations would do when they have to face the depletion. Is there anything our generation ought to do to ensure the certainty for them when we are a part of chain reactions of bringing more population into this planet. But it appears that we live our lives day by day with no plans at all. Contrarily, we have done the right thing when it comes to food. There is something that we have got it right for decades. That is why we have food enough to support the increasing number of population. Our earlier generations used to hunt animals for their food. They actually drove some species to extinction. At some point of time, the later generations started to realize that if we keep killing animals for their meat from the wild to support the growing population. As the time goes by we will drive these animals to extinction. That means no more meat to eat later on. The right way is to farm them by selecting the ones from the wild that litter in large number and use the knowledge in genetics to turn them into the way we want. We do the same thing on vegetation as well so we can ensure that we have enough food to sustain the growing population. Unfortunately, when it comes to energy consumption we have not found the right way to handle the situation. Not until now.
Fortunately, there is a new idea emerges on horizon. The idea to manipulate the effects of interactions between water and air driven by the most reliable and powerful forces. Thus, the outcomes will be an ample supply of electricity for us to use at no cost. It is completely "green energy".
This idea creates the apparatus that goes on pumping electricity by itself. This idea is the key to solve a lot of serious problems that we are now facing. Does it sound too good to be true?!?! Go to to find out.

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Posted by Bob Nikon
01 November 2013 | 01h372013-11-01T01:37:12Z

It's Good to Switch

I agree, it's good to find alternative energy sources instead of just relying on <a href="">caffeine</a>... I personally recommend healthier meals and some daily exercise. But B vitamins can help, as long as you don't overdo it!

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Posted by Jeffrey James
21 October 2013 | 19h172013-10-21T19:17:22Z

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