Among the 78% of Americans who are vitamin users, 34% have increased their usage since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, including nearly half of millennials, according to Mintel research.
The Covid-19 pandemic hit the world hard. It was a difficult time for everyone. However, it managed to hit millennials, those born between 1981 and 1996, in a unique way. This is due to the timing that the pandemic took place in their lives. Now that the millennials are in their late twenties to late thirties, many lifetime milestones were affected by Covid-19. Millennial women’s biological clocks are ticking, forcing some to even freeze their eggs. Others were simply afraid of falling prey to such a terrible virus. Also, people of all ages during this time showed a large decrease in exercise, as many were barricaded in their home in fear of Covid. From the start of the virus in 2020 until now, there was a great surge in the use of vitamins, minerals, and supplements, and a big portion of that increase came from millennials. The COVID-19 pandemic has prioritized health in the minds of consumers worldwide, and surprisingly, millennials are over twice as likely to buy more vitamins as a result of the pandemic than their baby boomer parents. Perhaps this trend comes from millennials watching their parents grow sick and attempting to bolster their immune systems through the use of vitamins and supplements. In any case, it is important to note ways to continue to capitalize on the millennial generation’s new found need to purchase vitamins, minerals, and supplements.
The use of vitamins, minerals, and dietary supplements (VMS) among Americans is on the rise. According to new research from Mintel, among the 78% of Americans who are vitamin* users, a third (34%) have increased their usage since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, including nearly half (47%) of Millennials. In line with consumers overall, Millennials say supporting their overall physical health (66%) and immune system (62%) are the top two reasons for VMS use. However, Millennials (43%) prioritize VMS use to support their mental well-being more than consumers overall (34%).
While sales of VMS surged during the pandemic, increasing an impressive 22% between 2019-20 to reach $31.52 billion in 2020, growth leveled out in 2022 when sales grew an estimated 4.1% to reach $35.64 billion. Sales are set to grow a further 5% in 2023 when the market is expected to hit an estimated $37.44 billion.
Sales of dietary supplements marketed for immune health increased after the emergence of COVID-19 because many people hoped that these products might provide some protection from SARS-CoV-2 infection and, for those who develop COVID-19, hoping to reduce the disease’s severity. It is illegal for a vitamin or supplement manufacturer to claim that their products can cure or prevent Covid-19. However, the surge in purchases from millennials, who are now approaching adulthood, seem to underline a trend of both preventing Covid and becoming healthier as a generation.