Millennials seen driving specialized nutrition category post Covid-19

The coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) will radically change specialized nutrition, with brands seeking to support the most vulnerable while the millennials driving the category post pandemic.

“Covid-19 will affect specialized nutrition from multiple angles, influencing health supplement priorities, food sourcing, and a drive in health monitoring,” Rick Miller, Mintel’s Food and Drink Associate Director for Specialized Nutrition, said in the Market Intelligence Digest.

Miller said infection fear drives immune-boosting diets, while consumers may be more willing to try botanical ingredients with health benefits in the event of no vaccine.

He said the crisis has exposed vulnerable groups that need specialized products.

“In the event of no vaccines, immune-boosting herbal extracts will be in high demand,” he added. “Brands should consider NPD (new product development) with immunity positioning to groups most at risk such as seniors, pregnant, nursing mothers, and those with long-term diseases such as diabetes.”

Miller also underscored the change in consumer demands for home air quality devices, electronic entertainment, and health monitoring after rehabilitating from social isolation and working from home.

“Brands should keep close watch on diagnostic technologies that will prevent, manage, and protect against future outbreaks and personalize nutritional health support,” he said.

Miller said specialized nutrition brands and their reactions to consumer outlook on aspects of health are expected to shape the specialized nutrition category in the future.

He also sees the millennials leading the drive on specialized nutrition purchasing post Covid-19.

“Millennials are far more influenced by trending news stories, and as a consequence, are more liable to make changes to their lifestyle than any other consumer groups,” Miller said.

“Brands should also consider other health trends of more interest to millennials such as air pollution, personalized diets through DNA testing, and mental health. Help to unify positioning and appeal to the ‘health overhaul’ that these consumers will be seeking post Covid-19,” he added.

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