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Consumers want to improve bone health with enriched products

Two in five British consumers want to improve their bone health, presenting ample opportunity for brands to help prevent or manage this rapidly growing health concern. However, there is still work to be done in convincing consumers of all ages about the importance of calcium and vitamin D.

According to a new Canadean survey, one in three British consumers is concerned about osteoporosis and 41% want to improve their bone health over the next twelve months. This desire is particularly high among consumers aged 55 and over, highlighting a big opportunity for brands to launch products enriched with calcium and vitamin D. Veronika Zhupanova, analyst at Canadean, says: “Awareness of osteoporosis is improving, leading older consumers to keep an eye out for food and drink products designed to help them maintain their bone health.” Canadean intelligence found that 217.3 billion tonnes of dairy and soy products were sold globally in 2014. This number is expected to reach 262.7 billion tonnes in 2019, presenting a lucrative market for enriched dairy products.*
 While consumers will turn to products offering extra calcium and vitamin D, brands should also help consumers address other lifestyle factors linked with osteoporosis. Regular exercise is essential, while sunlight is crucial to vitamin D production. For example, Fonterra’s adult milk brand Anlene offered consumers in Malaysia a free bone health check in supermarkets and hypermarkets. “This is a brand going beyond just trying to sell a product, but engaging consumers on a deeper level,” says Zhupanova.

Three million British consumers are affected by osteoporosis
Osteoporosis weakens bones, making them fragile and more likely to break. An estimated three million Britons suffer from osteoporosis, according to the National Osteoporosis Society, including one in two women and one in five men aged 50 and over. This difference between genders is mirrored in consumers’ concern about the diseases; across all ages, only 25% of men are concerned about osteoporosis, compared with 39% of women. 
According to Canadean, the importance of increasing awareness of osteoporisis will rise in tandem with the UK’s aging population. “At the moment, 33% of British consumers are concerned about osteoporosis; but this number will rise as more consumers become aware of the importance of improving bone health while they are young in order to prevent problems in future,” Zhupanova adds.

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