Despite slowing global economic growth, the global consumer health market continued to perform well in 2012, reaching a market value of $203 billion. As patent expiries and the use of generics erode prescription drug profits, companies are increasingly turning to consumer health products as a more consistent source of revenue.
Innovation within the consumer health market is thriving, as manufacturers introduce creative new formulations, delivery formats and positioning to help people manage their unique health needs more effectively.
Consumers' busy lifestyles are driving the popularity of energy and calming products, as well as on-the-go delivery mechanisms. Economic uncertainty is creating more demand for cheaper options, while preventive treatments are addressing critical public health.
Many consumers, meanwhile, are becoming more price conscious due to tightening personal budgets, but high healthcare costs and demographic trends support both preventive care and self-treatment with OTC options.
Drug manufacturers are capitalising on this demand by expanding into new categories, such as VDS; extending existing lines into new geographic markets; acquiring and revamping divested brands from other companies; and exploring unique prescription-to-OTC switches.
Another aspect of people's busy schedules that consumer health companies are striving to accommodate is a need for portable, on-the-go delivery formats. Consumers want products that are easy to pack and carry in a pocket or purse, while also being quick and palatable to consume, without water or complicated dosing instruments or measurement procedures.
Chewable or dissolvable oral tablets in reduced quantity pack sizes are a convenient alternative that also share the greatest similarity.
Asia Pacific represents the largest consumer health market in the world, largely based on its dominance in VDS, where it contributes over 48% of global sales. The area's rich history of traditional medicine, such as ayurveda and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), also makes Asia Pacific the market leader in H/T products, responsible for nearly 52% of worldwide sales.
North America remains a leader in consumer health, with the US and Canada combined comprising nearly 29% of global sales. The maturity of the market also makes the region active in new product development.
For more information on the consumer health market, see the latest research: Consumer Health Market
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