Botanical actives are leading the ingredients market, says report

By Katie Bird

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Effectiveness

Improved performance and consumers' love of all things natural is pushing the trend for plant-based active ingredients, according to a recent Kline report.

Market growth of botanical actives stands at 8.0 percent, ahead of 5.4 percent average growth for other specialty actives, such as marine ingredients, proteins and peptides, and enzymes, said the market research company.

The trend for natural products is the main driving force behind the popularity of botanical actives. If a synthetic product and a botanical one are offering the same functionality and efficiency the botanical will win out, suggests the report.

Performance has improved significantly

In addition, developments in the sector mean that botanical actives are no longer seen as inferior in performance to their non plant-based counterparts.

“Today’s consumer wants not only natural products, but also performance. These two requirements were regarded as contradictory a few years ago, but highly substantiated botanical products developed recently brought new solutions to formulators,”​ said Nikola Matic a Kline senior analyst.

Another reason cited for segment growth is the aging population of the US and Europe and the growing popularity of anti-aging products as a consequence.

More effective at lower levels

According to the report, botanical suppliers are also competing with traditional alternatives by promoting their products as more effective at lower levels. So even if the ingredients are more expensive, if less is needed to have the same effect, they remain competitive.

Kline analyst Anna Ibbotson told CosmeticsDesign.com: "Botanical suppliers, in order to compete with existing formulations, are promoting their products as being more effective at lower levels, than compared to for example vitamins, making the botanical actives comparable in price on a cost-performance basis."

Attesting to the importance of the botanical actives market, Kline notes a number of major chemical companies who have recently acquired important players in the area.

UK-based specialty chemicals company Croda acquired Sederma back in 1997, and Cognis took on Laboratoires Serobiologiques in 1999.

Furthermore, the report highlights a number of botanical companies including Gattefosse, Active Organics and Alban Muller which are making moves from botanic extracts into botanic actives which have a targeted purpose supported scientifically with efficacy tests.

Related topics: Market Trends, Naturals and organics

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