Echinacea market will expand at a robust pace in the coming years owing to the demand from food & beverage products, cosmetics, as well as pharmaceuticals with natural, organic, and herbal ingredients. The coronavirus pandemic has augmented the demand for a whole range of immunity boosting ingredients. A distinctive growth is being observed in herbal products as consumer consumption behavior shifts towards healthier options.
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, sale of herbal products was rising globally. For instance, U.S. sales of herbal supplements increased by about 8.6% during 2019, according to the American Botanical Council (ABC). Also known as purple coneflower, echinacea is one of the most popular herbs which has been used to treat various ailments. Today, it is best known as an over-the-counter herbal remedy for flu or common cold. Echinacea is also effective in treating pain, migraines, inflammation, and other health problems.
Many research studies over the years have shown that echinacea can have a positive effect on the immune system, help maintain optimum blood sugar levels, reduce feelings of anxiety, alleviate skin concerns, and even offer protection against cancer. Increasing awareness towards its anti-inflammatory properties and health benefits has led to widespread adoption of foods, cosmetics, and medications enriched with echinacea.
Food, pharmaceutical, and health & wellness brands are increasingly utilizing the herb as a natural and organic ingredient in baked goods, healthy syrups, skin tinctures, hair masks, and other products, augmenting global echinacea market trends. Commercially, echinacea is available in numerous forms such as capsules, tablets, ointments, creams, extracts, emulsions, and others.
North America echinacea industry share from pharmaceutical applications could grow substantially up to 2027. A variety of medicines with echinacea as the primary ingredient have been launched in recent years. Numerous studies have shown that the herb can potentially have a positive effect against coronaviruses. The U.S. is also a major market for herbal and cosmetic products, presenting a key focus area of echinacea suppliers.
Nature’s Bounty (Bountiful Co), Ancient Green Fields, Now Foods, Jarrow Formulas, Gaia Herbs, and Solgar Inc. are some of the leading suppliers of echinacea. In March 2021, vitamin brand Solgar Inc. had launched its newest immunity boosting product offering called Ester C Immune Complex, a new easy and convenient soft gel formulation. It is made of scientifically studied immunity enhancing ingredients including echinacea, elderberry, and astragalus.
Last year in November, A. Vogel and Spiez Laboratory had published a study to demonstrate the natural healing properties of a drug made with echinacea dubbed Echinaforce. The team reported that the drug was able to destroy coronaviruses in a test tube, provided it came in direct contact with the virus. However, clinical studies are needed to understand complete effects and side-effects of Echinaforce.
Echinacea market trends amid the COVID-19 pandemic
Rapid spread of the COVID-19 pandemic and government measures to contain its further spread has created certain challenges for the product business. Restrictions on travel has caused considerable disruption in logistics in-store consumable sales. However, the pandemic has also positively impacted echinacea market share as the demand for herbal products increased to not only prevent or treat COVID-19 but to relieve conditions such as stress, anxiety, and other problems caused due to related lifestyle changes.
Natural and organic ingredients demand acting on the immune system have gained significant traction. The COVID-19 situation has accelerated the preparations of echinacea based on its historical use for treating common cold and other ailments. The use of echinacea and other herbs is likely to further increase in the near future fueled by their documented antiviral effects. Also, increased consumer focus on skincare and haircare amid lockdown restrictions could boost the adoption of cosmetics and personal care products, contributing towards echinacea market expansion over 2021-2027.