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Weight Loss and Health Supplements - China - September 2014

“Weight loss and health supplements need to move away from the traditional dull, ‘drug’ feel image to improve their appeal to today’s consumers.”
–Lui Meng Chow, Research Analyst

This report will cover the following key topics:

  • Revitalising the image of weight loss products and health supplements
  • Increasing weight loss and health supplement credibility and relevancy 
  • Seizing opportunities in the male market

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Table of contents

  1. Introduction

      • Definition
        • Weight loss products
          • Health supplements
            • Methodology
              • Abbreviations
              • Executive Summary

                  • The market
                    • Weight loss
                      • Figure 1: Total retail market value of weight loss supplements that are certified*, 2009 -19
                    • Health supplements
                      • Figure 2: Retail market value of certified health supplements*, China, 2009 -19
                    • Health supplement companies and brands
                      • Figure 3: Leading companies’ market shares in the China retail certified health supplement market*, by value, 2012-13
                    • Innovations
                      • Weight loss
                        • Product claims based on both “naturalness” and low/no additives
                          • Marketing with beauty benefits
                            • Health supplements
                              • Immune system is the top functional claim in new launches in China
                                • All eyes on kids
                                  • The consumer
                                    • Over 60% of consumers consider themselves overweight
                                      • Figure 4: Weight condition, June 2014
                                    • Men are less strict on to themselves than women in weight management
                                      • Weight loss beverages, dissolvable products and meal replacements are most popular
                                        • More complaint about price in health supplements
                                          • Target health supplements differently to men and women users
                                            • Figure 5: Using health supplements on a regular basis, by gender, June 2014
                                            • Figure 6: Attitudes towards health supplements, by gender, June 2014
                                          • Trusted recommendations are most valued
                                            • Key issues
                                              • Revitalising the image of health supplements
                                                • Increasing weight loss and health supplement credibility and relevancy
                                                  • Seizing opportunities in the male market
                                                    • What we think
                                                    • Issues and Insights

                                                        • Revitalising the image of weight loss products and health supplements
                                                          • The facts
                                                            • The implications
                                                              • Figure 7: Bio-Life Chocbiotics Chewable Chocs with Probiotic, Malaysia, Jun 2013
                                                              • Figure 8: Pro Clinical Hydroxycut Weight Lose Sprinkles, US, February 2013 
                                                            • Increasing weight loss and health supplement credibility and relevancy
                                                              • The facts
                                                                • The implications
                                                                  • Seizing opportunities in the male market
                                                                    • The facts
                                                                      • The implications
                                                                        • Figure 9: GNC Mega Men Mini Dietary Supplement for Men, US, Jun 2014
                                                                        • Figure 10: Slimming Supplements for Men, France and South Africa, 2012-June 2014
                                                                    • Trend Applications

                                                                        • Trend: Prove it
                                                                          • Trend: Help Me Help Myself
                                                                            • Trend: Man in the Mirror
                                                                            • Market Size and Forecast

                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                • Market size – Weight loss
                                                                                  • Figure 11: Retail market value of weight loss products that are certified, China, 2010-13
                                                                                • Market forecast – Certified weight loss supplements
                                                                                  • Figure 12: Total retail market value of weight loss supplements that are certified*, 2009-19
                                                                                • Market size – Health supplements
                                                                                  • Figure 13: Retail market value of certified health supplements*, by segment, China, 2009 -13
                                                                                • Market Forecast – Certified health supplements
                                                                                  • Figure 14: Retail market value of certified health supplements*, China, 2009 -19
                                                                                • Forecast methodology
                                                                                • Key Factors Impacting the Market

                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                    • Price is becoming more transparent
                                                                                      • Busy urbanites’ lifestyle and work-related stress
                                                                                        • Increasing consumer awareness for preventative healthcare
                                                                                          • Concerns about weight lead to interest in weight management
                                                                                            • Figure 15: Weight condition, by gender and age group, June 2014
                                                                                          • Public scrutiny and tightening regulations
                                                                                            • Competition from other methods to manage weight and stay healthy
                                                                                              • Figure 16: Steps to maintain/lose weight, June 2014
                                                                                            • Lack of noticeable effects in the short term
                                                                                            • Market Share in Health Supplements Market

                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                • Top 10 players only account for less than 30% of the market value
                                                                                                  • Figure 17: Value share and value sales of top companies in retail certified health supplement market*, 2012-13
                                                                                                • Pfizer is still leading, followed by Amway
                                                                                                  • A fragmented market with a long tail of smaller local manufacturers
                                                                                                  • Who’s Innovating?

                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                      • Weight loss
                                                                                                        • Products claim both naturalness and low/no additives
                                                                                                          • Figure 18: Percentage of weight loss supplements that are positioned with natural, free-from and selected low/no/reduced claims, China, Japan, South Korea, UK and US, 2010-June 2014
                                                                                                          • Figure 19: Wei Er Jian Pai Slimming Capsules with free from additives claim, China, December 2012
                                                                                                          • Figure 20: Nutritional Concepts Mango-Lean Dietary Supplement, US, May 2013
                                                                                                        • New natural weight loss ingredient - Xanthigen
                                                                                                          • Figure 21: Blackmores Xanthigen Capsules, China, February 2014
                                                                                                        • Marketing with beauty benefits
                                                                                                          • Figure 22: Top two functional claims in new product launches in weight loss supplements, China, Japan, South Korea and US, 2010 -June 2014
                                                                                                          • Figure 23: Meisheng International Beauty Brand Li Ren Jiao Nang (Beauty Capsules), China, April 2013
                                                                                                        • Health supplements
                                                                                                          • Claim on immune system tops new product launches in China
                                                                                                            • Figure 24: Top five functional claims in health supplements new product launch, China, Japan, South Korea, UK and the US, 2010 -June 2014
                                                                                                            • Figure 25: Scutellaria Baicalensis and Amino Acid Oral Solution for Middle Aged and Senior Groups, China, February 2013
                                                                                                            • Figure 26: E-jiao oral solution, China, April 2013
                                                                                                          • All eyes on kids
                                                                                                            • Figure 27: Demographic claims in new product launches of health supplement, China, Japan, South Korea, UK and US, 2010-June 2014
                                                                                                            • Figure 28: The top functional claims of new health supplement launches for babies, toddler and children, China, South Korea, UK and US, 2010-June 2014
                                                                                                            • Figure 29: Hero Nutritionals Yummi Bears To Go! Multi-vitamin & Mineral Dietary supplement with natural fruit flavour, US, Mar 2010
                                                                                                          • Domestic brands are more active in new product launches
                                                                                                            • Figure 30: Top five companies in new product launches for health supplements, 2010-June 2014
                                                                                                        • Companies and Brands

                                                                                                          • International companies
                                                                                                            • Pfizer
                                                                                                              • Amway
                                                                                                                • Figure 31: Nutrilite’s best seller products, August 2014
                                                                                                              • Herbalife China
                                                                                                                • GNC Holdings, Inc.
                                                                                                                  • NBTY Inc.
                                                                                                                    • By-health Co., Ltd.
                                                                                                                      • Local companies
                                                                                                                        • Shangdong Dong-E E-jiao Co., Ltd.
                                                                                                                          • Guangdong LvShou Health Information Consulting Co., Ltd.
                                                                                                                            • Besunyen Holdings Company Limited
                                                                                                                              • Beijing CPT Co., Ltd.
                                                                                                                                • HiSun-Pfizer Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd
                                                                                                                                • The Consumer – How People Think about Their Body Figure

                                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                                    • Over 60% of consumers considered themselves overweight
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 32: Weight condition, June 2014
                                                                                                                                    • Married consumers are more likely to feel overweight
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 33: Weight condition, by marital status, June 2014
                                                                                                                                    • Be gentle and encouraging to women
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 34: Weight condition, by age and gender, June 2014
                                                                                                                                    • Perception of overweight amongst the high earners
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 35: Weight condition, by personal income, June 2014
                                                                                                                                    • Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou consumers are most pleased with their weight
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 36: Weight condition – in shape, slightly overweight and overweight a lot, by city, June 2014
                                                                                                                                    • Opportunities for health supplements to target to the ‘underweights’
                                                                                                                                    • The Consumer – Actions Taken to Manage Weight

                                                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 37: Steps to maintain or lose weight, by weight condition, June 2014
                                                                                                                                        • Exercise and diet control are the most common actions
                                                                                                                                          • Men generally are less committed to weight management
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 38: Steps to maintain/lose weight, June 2014
                                                                                                                                          • Complement weight loss products with healthy diet or exercise plan
                                                                                                                                            • Guangzhou and Chengdu consumers have the highest usage rate of weight loss products
                                                                                                                                              • Targeting weight loss products to people in their 40s
                                                                                                                                              • The Consumer – Reasons for Not Using Weight Loss Products

                                                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 39: Barriers to usage of weight loss products, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                  • Product safety is still the major barrier
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 40: Barriers to usage of weight loss products, by gender and age group, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                    • …demand for products made with “pure natural ingredients”
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 41: Raspberry Ketones + Gummies, US, February 2014
                                                                                                                                                      • Scepticism about effectiveness
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 42: Differences in barriers to using weight loss products, by weight condition, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                      • Raise product awareness in lower tier cities
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 43: Selected barriers to usage of weight loss products, by city and tier, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                      • Use price incentives to encourage first trial on premium products
                                                                                                                                                      • The Consumer – Weight Loss Product Usage Frequency

                                                                                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                                                                                          • Weight loss beverages and other dissolvable products are the most popular consumed
                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 44: Frequency of using weight loss products, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Weight loss products cater to different consumers
                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 45: Total frequency of all using weight loss products on a regular basis, by gender and age group, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                          • Emerging trend of young men in their 20s developing more regular usage
                                                                                                                                                          • The Consumer – Annual Spending on Weight Loss Products

                                                                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                                                                              • About three in five spent more than a RMB1,000 on weight loss products annually
                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 46: Annual spending on weight loss products, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 47: Annual spending on weight loss products, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                              • Annual spending of those who think they are overweight
                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 48: Annual spending on weight loss products, by Weight condition, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                              • What are high spenders spending on?
                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 49: Annual spending of those who take weight loss products on a regular basis, by types of weight loss products, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                            • The Consumer – Attitudes towards Weight Loss Products

                                                                                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                • Product innovation and effectiveness
                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 50: Attitudes towards weight loss product innovation and its effectiveness, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                • Women demand products enriched with health supplements
                                                                                                                                                                  • Young men appear to be a neglected market
                                                                                                                                                                    • Women in their 40s also feel estranged from current market offerings
                                                                                                                                                                      • Only about one fifth of users think chemical synthesis products are more effective
                                                                                                                                                                        • Purchasing weight loss products in the market
                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 51: Attitudes towards purchasing weight loss products in the market, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                        • Singletons like to have weight loss mobile apps
                                                                                                                                                                          • Tier one cities prefer to buying online
                                                                                                                                                                            • Offering referral program
                                                                                                                                                                              • Only one third think international brands are better than domestic brands
                                                                                                                                                                              • The Consumer – Market Penetration of Health Supplements

                                                                                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Differences exist between generations
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 52: Usage rate of health supplements, by age, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                  • City level differences
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 53: Usage rate health supplements, by city and tier, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                • The Consumer – Health Supplements Usage Frequency

                                                                                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                    • A clear order of popularity
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 54: Frequency of using health supplements, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Regular usage increases as age grows
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 55: Frequency of using health supplements on a regular basis*, by age, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Women take vitamins and minerals more frequently and regularly
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 56: Using health supplements on a regular basis, by gender, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Integrate health supplement offering with weight management solution
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 57: % of people who take health supplements regularly, by weight condition, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                  • The Consumer – Reasons for Not Using Health Supplements

                                                                                                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 58: Barriers to usage of health supplements, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Claims about removing the bad to alleviate negative concerns
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 59: New product launches in health supplements that claim to remove “the bad”, by China, UK and US, 2010 -June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 60: Natural Vitamin E and Coenzyme Q10 Softgel, China, May 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Encourage consumers to share usage experiences
                                                                                                                                                                                          • Price is an issue
                                                                                                                                                                                            • A new opportunity to position health supplements
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Disassociate health supplements from the image of drug pills
                                                                                                                                                                                              • The Consumer – Annual Spending on Health Supplements

                                                                                                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                                  • About four in ten spent more than RMB1,000 on health supplements annually
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 61: Annual spending on health supplements, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 62: New launches of health supplements that claim to be suitable for men, China, Japan, South Korea, UK and US, 2010 -June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                • The Consumer – Attitudes towards Health Supplements

                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Product specialisation and innovation related attitude statements
                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 63: Attitudes towards health supplements – Product specialisation and innovation, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Improving immunity is still the most popular benefit
                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Energy boost for parents
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 64: Share of new health supplements claim with energy boost launch in China, Japan, UK and US, 2010-June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                      • More tailored products to meet women’s needs
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 65: Selected attitudes towards health supplements, by gender, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 66: Example of women’s TCM based supplement that helps sooth menstrual pain, Taiwan, March 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 67: PMS Rescue Beverage Crystals, US, September 2011
                                                                                                                                                                                                      • Even adults can have fun flavours
                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 68: Vitamin C Dietary Supplement, US, April 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 69: Multi-Vitamin Adult Gummies, US, April 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Brands- and product-related attitude statements
                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 70: Attitudes towards health supplements – Brands and products, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • WOM has a stronger influence than brand
                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Professional product advice is important
                                                                                                                                                                                                          • The Consumer – Source of Influence for Weight Loss and Health Supplements

                                                                                                                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 71: Most influential source of information for weight loss products/health supplements, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Trusted recommendations are most valued
                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Online presence is important
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Brands need a new approach to connect consumers
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Collaborate with fitness or health care centres in lower tier cities
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – How People Think about Their Body Figure

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 72: Weight condition, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 73: Weight condition, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 74: Annual spending on weight loss products, by weight condition, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 75: Annual spending on health supplements, by weight condition, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Action Taken to Manage Weight

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 76: Steps to maintain/lose weight, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 77: Most popular steps to maintain/lose weight, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 78: Next most popular steps to maintain/lose weight, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Reasons for Not Using Weight Loss Products

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 79: Barriers to usage of weight loss products, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 80: Most popular barriers to usage of weight loss products, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 81: Next most popular barriers to usage of weight loss products, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Frequency of Using Weight Loss Products

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 82: Frequency of using weight loss products, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 83: Frequency of using weight loss products – Tablets/capsule, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 84: Frequency of using weight loss products – Milk shake powder for meal replacement, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 85: Frequency of using weight loss products – Fibre powder for meal replacement, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 86: Frequency of using weight loss products – Other dissolvable products, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 87: Frequency of using weight loss products – Weight loss oral liquid dosage, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 88: Frequency of using weight loss products – Weight loss beverages, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 89: Frequency of using weight loss products – Weight loss products for external use, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 90: Frequency of using weight loss products – Other weight loss products, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Annual Spending on Weight Loss Products

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 91: Annual spending on weight loss products, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 92: Most popular annual spending on weight loss products, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 93: Next most popular annual spending on weight loss products, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Attitudes towards Weight Loss Products

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 94: Attitudes towards weight loss products, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 95: Most popular attitudes towards weight loss products, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 96: Next most popular attitudes towards weight loss products, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 97: Other attitudes towards weight loss products, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix - Market Penetration of Health Supplements

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 98: Market penetration of health supplements, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 99: Market penetration of health supplements, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 100: Most influential source of information for weight loss products/health supplements, by Market penetration of health supplements, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Reasons for Not Using Health Supplements

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 101: Barriers to usage of health supplements, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 102: Most popular barriers to usage of health supplements, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 103: Next most popular barriers to usage of health supplements, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Frequency of Using Health Supplements

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 104: Frequency of using health supplements, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 105: Frequency of using health supplements – Vitamins, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 106: Frequency of using health supplements – Minerals, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 107: Frequency of using health supplements – Dietary supplements, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 108: Frequency of using health supplements – Chinese herb tonic, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Annual Spending on Health Supplements

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 109: Annual spending on health supplements, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 110: Most popular annual spending on health supplements, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 111: Next most popular annual spending on health supplements, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Attitudes towards Health Supplements

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 112: Attitudes towards health supplements, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 113: Most popular attitudes towards health supplements, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 114: Other attitudes towards health supplements, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 115: Least popular attitudes towards health supplements, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Source of Influence for Weight Loss and Health Supplements

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 116: Most influential source of information for weight loss products/health supplements, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 117: Most influential source of information for weight loss products/health supplements, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 118: Next most influential source of information for weight loss products/health supplements, by demographics, June 2014
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 119: Other influential source of information for weight loss products/health supplements, by demographics, June 2014

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Companies Covered

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Weight Loss and Health Supplements - China - September 2014

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    £3,170.69 (Excl.Tax)