Hyper-functional foods, which combine natural ingredients with added vitamins and proteins, such as smoothies or fruit-and-nut bars, are gaining in popularity, as are natural and herbal tonics based on trusted recipes.
“Hyper-functional foods are playing an increasingly crucial role in our daily lives, as we no longer have the time to have three balanced meals a day, and rely on snacking for much of our nutritional intake,” explains Andrea du Plessis, nutritional expert at Vital Health Foods.
Many retailers are seeing the shift in how consumers rely more on snacking and are creating hyper-functional foods in the form of health bars, raw food bars and energy bars to meet the demand. “Vital recognised how the consumer, particularly millennials, were relying more on snacks as their meals, so we have developed some on-the-go snacks to fill this ever-growing market.”
Wayne Robinson, director of scientific and technical affairs at the Health Products Association of South Africa (HPASA), says, “We are working closely with our members to give them all the information they need to adhere to the strict regulations set out for the manufacturing of complementary and alternative medicines (CAMs) industries and health products.”
Robinson, who is the voice of the industry when it comes to legislative matters, adds, “Within the CAMS industry, it is vital that we create this value, since without it, the products will not benefit the consumer.”
Along with this increasing reliance of health products comes need for knowledge about them, which is where HPASA plays a role. Launched in 1976, it is at the forefront of championing quality standards in the natural health products, nutritional dietary supplements and CAMs. The industry body represents a broad spectrum of stakeholders including manufacturers, wholesalers, distributors, retailers, practitioners and more.
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