The U.S. Market for Ethical Nutrition in Healthcare

Published - Sep 2004| Analyst - Mary Anne Crandall| Code - FOD029B
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Report Highlights

  • The total U.S. market for ethical nutrition in 2003 reached $10.2 billion at U.S. manufacturers’ sales levels.
  • By 2008, revenues are expected to rise at an AAGR (average annual growth rate) of 5.8% to $13.6 billion.
  • The total U.S. ethical nutrition market was dominated by the infant nutrition market that in 2003, accounted for 38.8% of total revenues.
  • Adult nutrition products will see the fastest growth, rising at an AAGR of 8.9% through the period.


Nutrition plays an important role in the prevention and management of many diseases. Even though there are different products and methods distinguishing each category, the common thread they all share is to provide nutrition. The impact of managed care and demand for cost-effective healthcare dramatically has changed the structure of this market and significantly has altered the strategies that companies use to survive and succeed.

The ethical nutrition market emerged from the need to provide individuals with adequate nutrition both in the hospital and in-home settings. Individuals who do not possess the capability, either mentally or physically, to provide their own nutritional needs require ethical nutritional products. Examples of those types of individuals would be infants, the elderly, the mentally impaired, and the critically ill, injured or diseased. Research has verified the importance of maintaining adequate nutrition for the body during times of stress from illness, injury or disease.

This updated BCC study examines the field of ethical nutrition in healthcare. This topic was of great interest in the early 1990s, and, due to increased numbers of adults requiring ethical nutritional therapy, there now is renewed interest in the market. The study identifies products and manufacturers that are operating in the market and analyzes the changing environment of ethical


The report contains:

  • A comparative overview of nutrition and its function in the human body
  • Identification of the three types of ethical nutrition: infant, adult enteral and parenteral
  • Definition of products and product types within each market as well ethical nutrition supplies and equipment
  • Complete analysis of all four market segments with forecasts through 2008
  • Assessment of current competitors and competitor market shares
  • Detailed descriptions of the industry, its relationship to the healthcare industry, its participants and trends for the future.


The information and analysis presented in this BCC report are based on extensive first hand interviews with primary executives, product managers, and clinical specialists in the area of ethical nutrition. Random surveying provided information about use of products and how products are obtained. Background information was obtained from various government and sources, medical journals, and trade magazines and interviews with doctors and dieticians. Key information from published literature was used to conduct interviews with over 22 industry participants to validate and obtain expert opinions on current and future trends in ethical nutrition in healthcare. Interviews were also used to confirm and/or adjust market size and competitor market share estimates, as well as to formulate market projections.

All market data pertain to the U. S. market at the manufacturer's level. Data are expressed in current U. S. dollars. The base year was 2003; historical data are provided for 2001 and forecast data are provided for 2008. Historical, base year and forecast data are provided for each market segment and subsegment. Market share information is provided for each market subsegment for the 2003 base year.


Mary Anne Crandall has been publishing market research in the life sciences for more than 17 years. She holds a Master of Science Degree in psychology, and is the founder and CEO of Mountaintop Medical, LLC, a consulting firm in Oregon. She has taught at Southern Oregon University for more than 16 years, and before joining BCC's analytical team, she published with Frost & Sullivan, Theta Reports, FIND/SVP, MDI, FeedBack Research Services, Prognosis and Hall Enterprises. Ms. Crandall specializes in prescription pharmaceutical markets.

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Published - Jan-2002| Analyst - Mary Anne Crandall| Code - FOD029A

Report Highlights

  • The total current U.S. market for ethical nutrition reached $9.1 billion in 2001 at U.S. manufacturers’ sales levels.
  • By 2006, it is anticipated that revenues likely will reach $12.5 billion, growing at an average annual rate (AAGR) of 6.5%.
  • The growing number of elderly and critically ill, and a shift toward home care, is fueling growth, with products for this group expected to reach nearly $2.2 billion in 2006, rising at an AAGR of 11.2%.
  • The market is dominated by infant formula, which in 2001, accounted for 39.1% of total revenues.


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