The overall food supplements market, which Euromonitor acknowledges is, “yet to reach maturity”, expanded by four per cent to be worth €11m for the full year, lower than in previous years.
The market researcher put this down to the fact that even though more Slovenians were interested in health and wellness concepts such as nutritional supplementation, they had reduced spending in the recession which hit hardest in 2008 and 2009.
The recession saw some consumers switching their alliance from more expensive supplements to letter vitamins, or combinations of letter vitamins and minerals which recorded the fastest growth of all.
Indeed mineral supplements were the most popular category in 2009.
“Slovenians are also already aware of the specific benefits offered by particular minerals,” Euromonitor said. “It is also believed that the human body is not always able to absorb minerals from consumed food and Slovenians do not hesitate to take them separately.”
While functional foods in recent years had grown more popular in Slovakia as in the rest of the world, Slovenians were not en masse substituting those kinds of foods for supplements.
“Conservative consumers still prefer conventional meals enhanced by dietary supplements,” Euromonitor said.
Nutricosmetics were highlighted to a female population concerned with appearance.
“The main purchasers of dietary supplements are female and they tend to care more about the condition of their skin, nails and hair.”
Products that marketed bone and immune health benefits were also popular, products aimed at children less so.
“Although parents are well aware of the benefits of vitamins on their children’s health, there is a lack of information and advertising of child-specific dietary supplements,” Euromonitor said.
Nutritive drinks and tonics had a presence but were not growing very quickly.
“However, the category remains at an early stage of development in Slovenia as these products are not conventional nor available in convenience formats.”
The five companies with the highest food supplements sales in Slovenia are Novartis, Krka dd Novo Mesto, Fidimed doo, Amway Corp and Pharma Nord Aps.