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Natural Medicine/Supplement Market to Double, Top $6 Billion by 2001, as Public Acceptance Grows.

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 3, 1995--Buoyed by broadening public acceptance, U.S. sales of natural medicines and supplements will more than double from $2.85 billion in 1994 to $6.5 billion by the year 2001, growing at a 12.5 percent compound annual rate, projects a new study just released by Frost & Sullivan.

The currently dominant share of total market revenues held by vitamins and mineral supplements will slip from 55 percent in 1994 to 40 percent in 2001 while that of faster-growing natural pharmaceuticals rises from 16 to 24 percent, of herbal supplements from 23 to 25 percent, and of homeopathic medicines from 4 to 9 percent in the same period, forecasts the report, U.S. NATURAL MEDICINE AND SUPPLEMENT MARKETS: ALTERNATIVE PRODUCTS GO MAINSTREAM.

Other, smaller segments include essential fatty acid supplements, with 1 percent of total 1994 market revenues, and phytonutrients, with 0.1 of a percent.

The market's central driver is the increased willingness of more Americans to turn to plant-based and other natural medicines as both remedies and nutritional supplements. The fastest-growing distribution arena for homeopathic, herbal product and other supplement markets has become the mass market.

Until recently, natural medicine and supplement products catered primarily to a limited population that subscribed to alternative medicine practices, a community whose views on health were largely dismissed by mainstream medicine. Now, however, many healthcare organizations are giving new consideration to alternative therapies.

A small but growing number of insurance companies are starting to offer limited reimbursement for some natural medicines and supplements. Media attention and release of scientific studies indicating health benefits have helped the industry. The increasing mainstream emphasis on preventive rather than reactive medicine also corresponds with the longstanding thrust of the natural medicine industry.

Aging of the population, bringing increasing incidence of cancer and chronic conditions that may be treated or potentially prevented by natural medicines, also supports market growth.

Passage of the Dietary Health and Education Act in late 1994 offered a boon to the industry by allowing structural and functional claims with a scientific basis on product labels, lending supplements greater credibility.

New methods of screening for potential drugs are emerging. Rather than testing a large number of compounds for action against a specific disease, many researchers have begun programs of mass screening for a variety of diseases. A number of companies are seeking new methods for the synthesis of plant compounds to improve availability and reduce the costs of direct extraction.

New product categories will evolve rapidly. Phytonutrients, for example, are an embryonic market with enormous promise, with research indicating their anti-carcinogenic action. Large mass-market manufacturers have entered this market, underlining its perceived potential.

Frost & Sullivan, a subsidiary of Market Intelligence, is an international high-technology research firm specializing in healthcare markets. All Frost & Sullivan reports are based on extensive interviews with marketing and technical experts from selected companies in each market segment. Primary research is validated by thorough analysis of available secondary research. Frost & Sullivan is the leading publisher worldwide of high- technology market research reports.

Code: 5240-52 Publication Date: November 1995 Price: $ 2195

CONTACT: Frost & Sullivan

Amy Arnell, 415/961-9000 (Mountain View)

Kristina Menzefricke, 44 171 730 3438 (London)

Nadge Keryhuel, 33 1 4742 9127 (Paris)
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Copyright 1995, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Nov 3, 1995
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