In my recent articles I have dwelt on the effects of Covid-19 pandemic on the global sports; how it witnessed the temporary closure of gyms, fitness companies and numerous sports events. It has been a nightmare of event that the world would quickly want to forget with no success. I spoke about the effects of the pandemic on sports and fitness persons and on why there must be caution in the restart of the sports events. In this discussion, I am going to talk about the effects of the pandemic on the world sports and fitness nutrition markets. How is the global market on food nutrition supplements fearing in the turn of events of this year 2020? What is the market looking like, in terms of sales, consumption, competitions etc?
FOOD INDUSTRY AND PRODUCTIONS DURING THE PANDEMI
Earlier in February 2020, there was a projection that the Sports Nutrition Market Size will surge to $31.0 billion by 2027, and CAGR approximate of 8.9% increase with what is obtainable in 2020. According to reports, “Increasing importance of an active lifestyle owing to rise in sedentary jobs and shift in demographic base from core athletes to recreational athletes and lifestyle users are the key factors expected to drive the market”. But it has it that as the consequence of increasing number of health and fitness centers and gyms, there is an expectant rise in consumer-awareness giving to the change in healthy lifestyle, and also because of the demands for sports nutrition products from athletes and fitness personnel. This expectedly will boost the market growth. But before we reach the 2027, let us manage the case at hand, which is the current state of the market in 2020 given the advent of the pandemic.
Nutrition and diet industries were a focal point during the covid-19 pandemic. This is one of the essential sectors of human endeavors that remained open but with many restrictions. The food industry and the market remained the hope of survival for all. This was important as food is one of the basic human needs, and to keep man going but in health and active lifestyle. It is true that most sectors of production were highly affected, and most sectors of the markets suffered considerable decline during this period, one thing that remain constant was the fact that people still buy food and eat. It came to a time everyone needed to stock more food because of the daily worsening situation of the pandemic. This projected some sectors of the industry, and saw them grow geometrically in production, consequently pushing up the markets for such goods too. There lie the mix pictures of the market, some escalate while some diminish both in production and in market values.
Reports from the Nutrition Insight, has it that in 16 Mar 2020, $5 million fund was raised to support emerging brands significantly affected by Natural Products Expo West 2020, though this was later canceled. There was development of multitude of companies in the nutritional space grapple to mitigate both the human and financial fallout from the corona virus outbreak. It reports that “2020 will be the first time in 40 years that we will not host an annual natural and organic product show in Anaheim, California.” The organizers of this industrial project showcased that in the sports nutrition industry, there was emergence of new brands, new product innovations.
It is obvious that the pandemic took a major toll on the sports nutrition industry as bans on large gatherings are being rolled out around the world. Nutrition Insight also gave an example with the postponement of Vitafoods Europe to September 1-3, 2020, with Nutrition Insight covering industry’s mixed feelings.
The truth is since the Pandemic touched the sector of sports and fitness so much, the nutrition productions falls to the declined part. Sports being a contact event and one that draws up gathering of people, in the cases of the umpires, fans and audience, it is just that they were closed to save lives. Fitness and gyms are closed too, there were cancellations of major sporting events and related consequences of the COVID-19 outbreak and its containment measures, meaning that the market hit much at this sector. The directives of lock down, the consumers of the sports nutrition supplements are also silenced. Obviously, the government did their best to ensure the security of lives of the citizens. Though there was no ban on productions of the nutrition products but since regular physical activity is combined with the healthy balanced diets, lack of physical activities means reduction in sports food supplement intake. Not many people buy supplements, and even taking them
has been discouraged by lack of sports, especially carbohydrate, protein, and vitamin products.
NUTRITION MARKET SITUATION REPORTS
Prophetically, at the nascent stage of the pandemic, the former International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) Director General Shenggen Fan, wrote that COVID-19 is a health crisis. But it could also lead to a food security crisis if proper measures are not taken. The reality at hand shows that it has become a food security crisis, both in production and marketing. Till toll has hit the sports nutrition market, as it continues to spike as the result of total cancellation of sports events; although recent situations show that some sectors are restarting again. But the fact is that most sports and fitness bodies are still deliberating on so many uncertain treatises before the restart.
As Sports industry continues to search ways to work through the COVID-19 situation, and as the global health crisis continues to evaluate the effects of the pandemic so far on the many aspects of our lives, the sports nutrition market is not left behind. The market attitude becomes a concern also for the industry. One thing is sure, man must eat, but the question remains whether he eats appropriately. Athletes and fitness individuals cannot do, though they are indoors training and exercises without adequate nutrition. The question remains the ability to acquire the products, and the attitude towards the market, and how they manage the products.
Some daily food supplements consumed by the fitness and sports people for the improvement of sports like Isotopic drink powder, capsule/tablets, ready-to-drink protein drink, protein bars, supplement powder, are among those productions affected. Let us not forget that these drinks are consumed mainly during sports events by athletes for body building. And talking about the mannerism of the athletes that leads to the reaction of the market, we can show this as an example: if in the dietary of an athlete, he has his chart in this form as regards the addition of supplements: breakfast 20%, morning snack 5%, lunch 40%, afternoon snack 5% and dinner 30%, surely the lock down and lack of physical activity must lead him to alter the chart. Now assuming he has breakfast 10%, morning snack 2%, lunch 20%, afternoon snack 3% and dinner 10% of additional food supplements, we can see that surely the market must have been affected. If 1 million athletes take to this mannerism, there will be almost 50% slash both in production and in market.
FACTORS PROMPTING NUTRITION MARKET SITUATIONAL REACTIONS
Following how the global sports nutrition market is projected during the forecast period of the covid-19 pandemic, we concentrate on the athletes and bodybuilders as the consumers in various continents of the world. We also consider their attitude towards the market in the indoor lock down and recreational exercises during this period, using some researches already made by some primary sports nutrition researchers.
1. Stockpiling foods:
Following the experts’ flag COVID-19’s impact on nutrition 18 Mar 2020, there was an obvious attitude of people around the world towards stocking food and supplements that would serve for the period. Because of the confinement of people in their houses, they had no other option than to stockpile foods with the money at hand, because of the danger of going out because of the pandemic. This attitude brought declination of food and supplements afterwards, giving that people were using the ones they stocked.
2. Loss of jobs/slashing of salaries:
One of the unfortunate repercussions of the covid-19 pandemic on the sports nutrition market is the lost of jobs or slashing of salaries of workers in the sports industry. Some personnel in the sector gave up some part of their salaries to do charity or as a sign of solidarity, which also affected their budgets and attitudes towards the market. Some got theirs slashed because of nonactive labour situation, while many lost their jobs. This is the worst scenario to the nature of the market. It brought an immediate consequence of loss of income, especially where there is no generous severance package (payoffs) or have significant savings. This limits the consumers’ quest to purchase in the market and diminish sales.
3. Restriction of international movements:
Since one of the means to contain the spread of the disease is through restrictions of the frontiers, it affects the market too, as millions of people around the world who depend on international trade for nutrition supplements are also restricted. So many countries could not minimize potential impacts on the food supply because of the unannounced visit of the pandemic and this brought unintended consequences on global trade and sports nutrition market. Because of this, several countries are under travel advisories or have prohibited their citizens from traveling to contain the international spread of the virus. For this, most international trades are restricted.
CHANCES OF MODIFICATION IN PRODUCTION AND MARKETING
Everyone knows it has been an unfortunate situation for all sectors of human endeavors not only on sports nutrition market, but since our interest is in the structural stability of the market, some questions need to be asked:
- a. Can the standard of health, fitness and other needs of the athletes and fitness individuals be seriously affected given the effects of covid-19 on the sports nutrition industry and market?
- b. In Sports, will unfit athletes and players be allowed to enter into a competitive sport without adequate provisions of diets and nutrition plans? Is there going to be an alteration in technical skills, specialized training or certifications receive in the training because of the need to manage their unfitness?
- c. Athletes, especially football players need to better health to compete in the fast and demanding sports events, what will be the nature of the games if there are so many injuries and, or unfortunate situations in the field?
- d. And, finally, could the production industry be of help in the constant production, or modification of some products to help in retaining the health effect of the athletes, that is to say, increase in some nutrient contents to boost the effects?
HOPE OF ADEQUATE CIRCULATION OF SPORTS NUTRITION SUPPLEMENTS
Though there may have been a witness of a fluctuating market as regards sports nutrition, the graphic reports give us confidence of a brighter future. As the love for sports and involvements grow, there have been emergence of large companies that will hopefully bring widespread product availability.
This will expectedly project the demand for these food supplements.
These are the list of present companies that would effectively help to drive up the market of sports nutrition:
2. Glanbia Plc
3. Abbott Laboratories Inc
4. Neutra Science Labs
5. Hormel Foods Corporation
6. GNC Corporation
The sports nutrition market also has a bright future because various government initiatives are laid down to promote health among the growing base of health-conscious population. The fact that there are orientations and rising awareness on the risk of sedentary health will further drive the market.