Keeping an eye on the market: Lutein and zeaxanthin in focus
Since the start of the pandemic, eye health has been receiving unprecedented focus thanks to the increase in screen time across all ages, with FMCG Gurus revealing that 51% of global consumers are not satisfied with their eye health and 37% of those believe their sight has gotten worse over the last two years.
Despite huge concerns around stress and anxiety over the last year, Euromonitor (International Health and Nutrition Survey 2020, 2021) reports that eye/vision issues show the highest increase of all health concerns in 2021 and projects outstanding growth for many eye health supplement markets – CAGRs for the period between 2020 and 2025 are 10.9% for Germany, 14.6% for Brazil, and 9.2% for Egypt.
There is also evidence of growing awareness of blue light (29% y-o-y growth of Google searches for “blue light” in 2020), dissatisfaction with current solutions. As such, Euromonitor states that over 43% of eye health product consumers are seeking new solutions and 17% are dissatisfied with their current treatment.
PharmaLinea believes there are clear issues with the products currently on the market.
Matevž Ambrožič, PharmaLinea Marketing & PR Director, says: "While there are health areas where these more traditional pill formats are a completely valid choice, launching such products in the preventive eye health space might not be the most successful, because when it comes to preventive products, there is no acute motivation for taking the supplements and the user experience - taste and delivery form - needs to do what it can to increase compliance.
"Also, the elderly population is an important demographic and pill fatigue is a pressing issue when addressing them. And prevalence of pill forms in eye health is such that other forms need to be considered if market differentiation is to be achieved.
"Additionally, in terms of ingredients, the majority of the market consists of commodity herbals with arguable efficacy and low-quality carotenoids without direct clinical support on the exact ingredient used. Enhanced bioavailability and relevant levels of all three carotenoids (lutein and two zeaxanthin isomers) are rare, yet essential for health benefits. Hence, we formulated >Your< Vision Line on a branded lutein and zeaxanthin source of sufficient quality to convince ophthalmologists."
The new products to join the company's Your Vision range, are Orosticks (orodispersible powder) and Liquid Sticks.
The range utilises highly sought-after carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin, a patented ingredient with leading levels of zeaxanthin, unique technology for enhanced bioavailability.
Backed by clinical trials, the products are designed to provide increased macular pigment optical density, protection against oxidative stress, and visual performance improvements, such as photostress recovery and disability glare.
Maja Orešnik, Science & Research Director, says: "The main ingredients lutein and zeaxanthin are known for their specific accumulation in macular retina, where they can provide protection against oxidative stress. Ensuring sufficient macular pigment optical density (MPOD) is thus primarily a preventive function. However further research has revealed that increase in MPOD leads to visual performance improvements of certain existing conditions, such as photostress recovery and disability glare. So, while the products were developed with prevention in mind, there are additional benefits and the possibility of corrective positioning.
"The demographics targeted with our new product launches range from children to adults, with >Your< Vision Liquid Sticks catering to children and >Your< Vision Orosticks to adult users."