First half of cold season ends with H1N1 hangover

All the hype around H1N1 
that was so prevalent in 2009 is gone, leaving only the tough comparisons a year later. That makes the first half of the 
2010-2011 cough-cold season an H1N1 hangover with overall sales of $4.6 billion, representing a slight decline of 1.8%, for the 52 weeks ended Dec. 26, 2010, according to SymphonyIRI Group. What was missing in 2010 was the 2009 summer of sickness that reached a crescendo in September.

For the coming year, the introduction of Allegra to over-the-counter aisles will bring a whole new once-prescription-only allergy consumer to OTC. And though Allegra is not expected to reach the sales heights of more than $200 million like its two second-generation antihistamine predecessors, an incremental $100 million to OTC allergy sales is not out of the question. 

Second is the growing number of states considering a reverse-switch and pushing 
pseudoephedrine-containing products back to prescription-only status. If successful, that may create a snowball effect among neighboring state legislators and threaten the “D” business that generated $263.7 million in sales on growth of 1% across the top three brands — Claritin-D, Mucinex D and Zyrtec-D.


The article above is part of the DSN Category Review Series. For the complete Cough-Cold Buy-In Report, including extensive charts, data and more analysis, click here.

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