NutraIngredients-Asia state of the industry survey part 1: Optimism high and finances buoyant, but new funding still a challenge

By Gary Scattergood

- Last updated on GMT

There's a positive outlook on financial performance.
There's a positive outlook on financial performance.

Related tags Nutrition

Three out of four respondents in the first NutraIngredients-Asia State of the Supplements, Health & Nutrition Survey believe their firms will post better financial results this year than last.

Our inaugural poll sought to gauge views about the current state of the Asia-Pacific supplements, health and nutrition sector.

We collated survey responses from industry professionals across our readership on topics such as market conditions, investment and employment, trading relationships, industry initiatives, and regional snapshots in Southeast Asia, India, Japan, China, Australia and New Zealand.

We can now reveal that our respondents, including manufacturers, suppliers, researchers, regulatory affairs professionals, and marketers were overwhelmingly positive about the state of the industry in the region.

A total of 86% of our respondents said they were more positive about the future of their company today than they were a year ago.

Rising consumer awareness of health and well-being in the region, the opportunities afforded by the rise in non-communicable diseases, and the prospects for international expansion were all cited as factors resulting in growth.

Furthermore, this optimism looks set to have a positive impact on most firms’ bottom lines, with 76% saying they expected their company's profit margins to improve over the next year.

Many highlighted new product development as a reason for financial improvements, while others pointed to steady economic growth on a national and regional level.

Private equity boost

There were mixed responses, however, when it came to securing new investment and funding: 39% said it had been a major challenge, but the same percentage said they hadn’t found it a struggle. Those who had been able to secure extra cash pointed to banks becoming more willing to lend to nutrition ventures, while others noted a rise in private equity interest.

NutraIngredients-Asia editor-in-chief Gary Scattergood said: “There is little doubt that the rise in issues such as obesity and diabetes, alongside long-standing micronutrient deficiencies in some emerging nations, are offering considerable opportunities for supplement and functional food firms.

“All of the MNCs now have considerable operations across APAC and, encouragingly, most are committed to finding genuinely regional and local solutions to the big issues affecting the region.

“This, alongside a rising tide of innovation from start-ups, especially in the field of personalised nutrition, and growing scientific rigour around the likes of traditional Chinese medicine, means the industry appears well placed to meet consumer needs and enjoy the business benefits.”

Over the next two weeks, we’ll be elaborating on other findings, including those around e-commerce and regulations.

You can download the full report here.

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