The use of vitamin D has risen by eight per cent in the last 12 months, making it the fastest-growing vitamin in the supplements market, market research company Mintel has found.
Consumer research for Mintel involving almost 2,000 respondents in July this year found that the overall vitamins and supplements category is expected to grow by nine per cent this year to £494m, with vitamin D taken by 38 per cent of VMS users – up from 30 per cent last year.
Vitamins D and C were the only single vitamins to grow in popularity, with vitamins B Complex, A and E all showing a decline. Multivitamins held steady, with 51 per cent of VMS users taking them.
Mintel has also found that in the first eight months of 2020, more new products containing vitamin D were launched than in the whole of 2019.
Mintel’s Emilia Greenslade said: “The rise in vitamin D usage is likely due to its associations with immunity and memory improvement. Highly publicised research linking vitamin D with protection against Covid-19 may also have impacted usage, although this has been challenged by NICE which concluded that there is no evidence to support taking vitamin D supplement to prevent or trea Covid-19.
“Government advice may also have impacted usage, with the Government advising that people consider taking a daily supplement containing 10 micrograms of vitamin D as social distancing sees people spend fewer [sic] time in the sunlight and more time indoors.”
Ms Greenslade noted that the pandemic is likely also behind the growth in the overall VMS category, though she said this was largely driven by existing consumers.
“Strong consumer demand for VMS in the initial weeks of the epidemic led to stockpiling which impacted availability of these products.
“While supply chains quickly returned to normal, demand has continued to remain high. But despite the boost in sales, the number of users remains the same with the rise in value of the category in 2020 driven by increased usage amongst existing users.”