Continued strong growth in the US market for natural personal care market saw it reach an estimated value of $5 billion in 2004 as consumers seek out chemical-free alternatives, reports Simon Pitman.
The figures mean that the market has grown by a total of 50 per cent since 2000, according to a new report, The US Market for Natural and Organic Personal Care Products, published by Packaged Facts .
The report defines the market as including natural and organic skin care, hair care, oral care and color cosmetic products. Breaking the figures down into market segments, skin care is the leading segment of the market with a value of $3 billion, while hair care has had the strongest growth over the five-year period.
And the projected growth shows no sign of abating, with the report's researchers estimating that by 2009 the natural personal care market will climb to $7.9 billion - an increase of 58 per cent.
Several factors are contributing to the strong growth of the market-which is all the more significant when contrasted with the relatively flat market for conventional hair and skin products, the report says.
Furthermore all the positive attributes are there: the aging baby boomer population, widespread concern about toxic ingredients, an ongoing effort to improve natural HBC efficacy, and an expanding natural retail channel together with an expanding presence in the mass market.
"The Big Blur has already begun," said Don Montuori, acquisitions editor of Packaged Facts. "Although relatively few natural brands are significant enough to show up in mass-market data tracking, natural brands' collective presence is a growing force. And in the natural channel's leading retail outlets, such as Whole Foods, both natural and non-natural brands are stocked in center-store, if not yet, in the personal care department."
Naturally, in response to the increased demands for natural and organic personal care products, many companies are responding to this market trend by either increasing their use of natural ingredients in existing product lines or else creating new lines that specifically cater to this trend.
One small company that is responding to the trend is Now Foods , a maker of natural food products and supplements. It has a small personal care product line, which is set to be expanded following the acquisition of a cosmetics testing company in May of this year.
Other smaller natural ingredient manufacturers include Burt's Bees - which expanded into cosmetics after starting off as a manufacturer of furniture polish - as well as Avalon Natural Products and Juice Beauty, which both feature a high percentage of organic products in their formulations.
One of the most prominent players in the organics market is Dr. Bronner's Magic Soaps , the company that is currently locked in a battle with the USDA over the labeling of organic personal care product, a story which was reported on by us and can be accessed by clicking here .