Italian food supplements market growing 10% per year

By Shane Starling at NUCE in Milan

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Food supplements European union Eu

Italian food supplements market growing 10% per year
The Italian food supplement market is showing no signs of a slowdown despite the country’s well-documented financial problems, with annual growth rates steady at 10% and fed by high quality products and broadening consumer interest.

“More and more Italian consumers understand that both food and food supplements can maintain and improve health and supplements are increasingly interesting to the population,”​ said Germano Scarpa, president of the Italian food supplements association (Federsalus) at the NUCE functional foods and nutraceuticals event in Milan.

He said food supplements like vitamins, minerals, omega-3s, botanicals and probiotics had become established over many years in a country that previously took a very practitioner-style approach to dietary supplementation.

Constant 10% yearly growth had seen the market reach €1.7bn, growth fed by Italian willingness to consume supplements coupled with an emphasis on quality that dates back to pharma heritages of many suppliers and manufacturers.

“If quality can be maintained I think this growth will be maintained.”

EU law

Scarpa said his group had been closely involved in a mission that saw European-wide concerns about the implementation of the nutrition and health claims regulation (NHCR) brought before the European Union Ombudsman.

“We made an important activity by explaining to the European Commission that the work of EFSA was not so good because the rules of assessment were never clear. That helped have botanicals removed from the process.”

“Perhaps it would have been better to have different regulations, but this is what we have and we must work with that. But if you take herbs – there is a positive list in Italy – and maybe the EU can learn from that when they come to treat the herbs.”


Although coming from a small scale, he said nutricosmetic products that delivered skin benefits were the fastest growing category in Italy.

“It’s a new market but the big cosmetics companies have launched product concepts based on ‘in-out’ – and I think that market is improving rapidly because Italians are very interested in the quality and beauty of their skin.”

Beauty from Within

The second annual Beauty From Within Conference will open its doors again at the Hotel Lutetia in Paris on October 27th, focusing in on the latest opportunities, trends and challenges in nutricosmetics.

The packed conference programme will have a two-pronged focus, with morning presentation geared up to the marketing and branding of nutricomsetics across the globe, while the afternoon session will focus on new product developments and science.

For more information click here.

Related topics Suppliers Supplements

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