Irish health stores are top of the pops for supplements

The Irish market for supplements is looking good. Almost 60% take food supplements and most of them do so all year round. Of those, a third (66%) take them daily.

What's more, health food stores are the favoured place to buy them and when it comes to buying food, half say they prefer seasonal or locally produced.

These are just some of the results of comprehensive research by the Irish Health Trade Association which commissioned iReach Insights to examine the use of supplements. A thousand Irish consumers were surveyed.

Almost half (48%) say they or a family member consider food supplements to be an important part of a healthy diet while more than half (53%) believe they do not get the right amount of vitamins and minerals through diet alone.

The top five supplements are Vitamin D (61%), multivitamin and minerals (47%), omega-3s (45%), vitamin C (36%), alcium/magnesium/zinc (33%) and B vitamins (28%).

Not far behind these are probiotics, iron, glucosamine and vitamin A. Average spend is just under €10 a week.

Of those who take supplements, 56% were buying them before the pandemic but since the lockdowns, 16% are buying more and 23% are buying different supplements.

Top of the Pops for overall purchases of supplements are Ireland's health stores (89%) with pharmacies close behind at 84% and grocery (73%). Pharmacies score highest for physical stores but, interestingly, health stores score top among those only buying online (29%), above online specialists (23%) and pharmacies (14%).

Personal research wins top spot for influencing purchases (45%) followed by GP referral (31%), family/friend recommendation (29%) and health practitioner advice (21%).

Food purchase factors are seasonal and/or local (49%), packaging (42%), sustainability (37%), organic (30%) and fair trade (28%). Vegetarians account for just 15% and vegans 5%.

The conclusion? Ireland understands the importance of supplementation and health stores are doing a great job in offering a helping hand.

Read more Insights here...