HEALTH

Nordic Naturals adds two products to its ‘Certified for Sport’ line

BY Michael Johnsen

WATSONVILLE, Calif. – Nordic Naturals earlier this week introduced two new products to its “Certified for Sport” line: Nordic CoQ10 Ubiquinol Sport and Nordic Probiotic Sport. 
 
“As a former gymnast and a regular on the tennis courts, I understand the importance of giving my body only the purest ingredients," stated Joar Opheim, CEO Nordic Naturals. "By collaborating with NSF to offer these certified products, we are helping athletes of all levels to feel 100% confident about the quality and safety of our ingredients.”
 
Nordic CoQ10 Ubiquinol Sport offers 100 mg coenzyme Q10 ubiquinol in extra virgin olive oil. CoQ10 ubiquinol is important for the cardiovascular and muscular systems, as this nutrient is present in the blood, within cells throughout the body and within the membranes of mitochondria, where it serves its greatest role for athletes by helping to generate energy for muscle contraction. Studies on athletes have shown that supplemental CoQ10 can support energy production, performance and recovery from fatigue, and can lower the incidence of muscle injury due to exercise.
 
Nordic Probiotic Sport offers a targeted blend of four probiotics, enhanced with prebiotics for a total of 12 billion live cultures. Studies have documented the benefits of probiotics — including respiratory, intestinal and antioxidant benefits — among many different types of athletes. Probiotic supplementation also supports normal immune function, especially under stressful conditions.With no refrigeration required, this highly stable formulation is perfect for on-the-go fitness enthusiasts.
 
The NSF International’s Certified for Sport Program helps ensure that athletes have access to nutritional products that are free of banned substances or their metabolites. It also verifies that products contain the actual quantity of ingredients listed on the label. 
 
 
 

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Report: Animal lovers are gravitating toward retail to fill their pet’s scripts

BY Michael Johnsen

HIGH POINT, N.C. – More pet parents than ever are claiming their animals as members of the family, which may represent an opportunity for retail pharmacy as those consumers begin looking for pet pharmaceuticals from the same trusted professional who supplies medicines for the rest of the family – the neighborhood pharmacist. 
 
"This [trend] is going to create a disruption in the industry," noted Doug Barton, president Trone Brand Energy, in an interview with Drug Store News. "We need to understand this," he said. "How much of the business is going to be in different channels of trade? What's happening? Where is it going?"
 
One of the other driving forces behind the trend toward pet medicines being dispensed at retail, Barton said, is legislation. Many states are exploring regulations that would require veterinarians to produce a paper prescription if asked, he said.  
 
Approximately 25% of today's pharmacists currently stock pet prescription medication, though 64% of the remaining pharmacists stated they believe their pharmacy should stock these medications, Barton noted. This means a strong majority of all pharmacists are likely to stock pet prescription products as distribution models evolve, representing a tremendous increase in the availability of pet medications at retail pharmacies. 
 
For manufacturers, this is creating a demand for clinical education as more pharmacists look to incorporate pet medicines into their respective practices. "A very significant number of pharmacists do not feel qualified to be able to distribute these drugs because they are different," Barton said. "There's also a dynamic around the use of generic drugs."
 
Trone Brand Energy and Brakke Consulting are releasing a comprehensive marketing report on pet medicines in October, including polls of 1,000 pet owners, 700 veterinarians and 750 pharmacists, though the report is being syndicated now. 
 
“We have identified the pet owners who are early adopters of the new pharmaceutical distribution models as well as the factors that will have an impact on their usage of the new purchase channels,” Barton said. “These changes will likely create significant disruption in the industry and these insights can help retail pharmacies, manufacturers and veterinarians navigate the changing landscape.”
 
The market for pet care is certainly expanding. More than three in five Americans (62%) have at least one pet in their household, with ownership highest among the two youngest generations tested (65% among Millennials, 71% among Gen X), according to the latest Harris Poll released Thursday. Nearly all pet owners (95%) consider their pets to be members of the family. 
 
Pet owners spend nearly a combined $1,200 per year on food/treats ($476.6), medical costs ($425.7), pet sitting/boarding ($128.5), toys ($63.7) and other equipment ($97.4). Women spend more on these items and services for their pets than men (nearly $1,400 vs. less than $1,000).
 
Over one in 10 pet owners (12%) have taken out health/medical insurance policies or any of the pets they own. These policies are most common among Millennials (19%, vs. 9% Gen X, 8% Baby Boomers and 9% Matures). Additionally, men (15%) are more likely than women (9%) to have such a policy.
 
Americans with kids in the household are more likely to have at least one pet than those without (73% vs. 57%) – and kids in those households may themselves be more likely to be the pet owners of the future, as Americans who had a pet when they were growing up are more likely than those who didn't to have one now (66% vs. 41%).
 
When it comes to what pets are in these households, dogs come out on top with 71% of pet owners saying they have at least one dog; half (49%) have cats, while one in ten have fish (11%) and less than one in ten pet owners have a bird (8%) or some other type of pet (9%).
 
The majority of dog owners have just one pooch in the house (61%), and the average number of dogs in these households is 1.6. Cat owners are somewhat less likely to limit their home to just one kitten(53%), and the average number of cats under those roofs is 2.
 
 
 

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Copper devices catch consumers’ eye

BY Michael Johnsen

In recent months, copper-infused compression devices have caught the attention of shoppers in the first aid aisle.

From socks to gloves to braces for the back, knee, ankle and elbow, these products are providing pain relief to thousands of weekend warriors and people with circulation problems.

(To view the full Category Review, click here.)

Marketers of these items — including Idea Village (Copper Fit Sleeves), Telebrands (Copper Hands) and Ontel Products (Miracle Copper socks) — said that the copper fibers woven into their products provide support for muscle stiffness, soreness and pain; reduce recovery time; and improve circulation.

According to recent IRI data, copper-infused supports from Idea Village, Telebrands and Ontel racked up a nearly $23.8 million in combined sales last year. While still only comprising a small portion of the $695.8 million muscle and body support devices market, these items have shown some of the strongest gains in the category.

“They are still not selling up to the typical category levels,” said Tabs Group founder and CEO Kurt Jetta, “ but they appear to be building an audience as their velocity improves month-by-month.”

In fact, he said, Copper Fit and Copper Hands are two of the four brands — Bell-Horn and Natures Pillows’ BeActive being the others — that have accounted for half of the growth in the sports bandages segment over the past three months.

Marketers of copper-infused first aid products note that the metal has a centuries-old reputation for providing positive health benefits, including strong evidence of powerful anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties. Copper recently was registered at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as the first solid antimicrobial material. Copper-infused items wick sweat away from the body to prevent chafing and rashes, and because copper has strong antimicrobial properties, these products remove odors, the companies said.

Miracle Copper, for instance, said its socks combine two technologies — graduated compression and copper-infused fibers — to provide a host of benefits, including improving circulation, reducing swelling and relieving aches and pains.

The buzz surrounding copper-infused first aid products has led retailers and suppliers alike to step up their promotions for these items. During the first week of June, data complied by ECRM shows that Idea Village’s Copper Fit was the third-most promoted brand of elastic wraps, supports and braces.

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