As consumer demand for natural and organic products market growth, in 2020, the United States the total retail sales of natural products amounted to $189 billion, including natural $63.1 billion retail channels, traditional retail channels to $85.4 billion, electricity retail $15.9 billion, multi-level market retail channels to $12.7 billion, $5.1 billion mail order and retail channel, $6.5 billion in other retail channels. These are mainly food, frozen foods, meat, poultry and fish, and plant-based products. Condiments and meat are growing fastest in natural channels, with organic meat, fish and poultry growing fastest.
Many independent natural retailers saw significant sales growth in 2020 as consumers stocked up on food for home cooking, eschewed restaurant meals and focused on their health and nutrition needs. At the same time, the pandemic is forcing retailers to adjust their operational strategies, from complying with changing health and safety protocols to adding e-commerce capabilities and improving bulk and prepared food products.
Sales of dietary supplements have soared
Sales of vitamins topped the list in 2020 as the global COVID-19 pandemic prompted consumers to focus on basic health. At the same time, sports supplements, which were hot a year ago, are taking a hit as consumers stay at home, while weight management, stress reduction and sleep health are emerging as hot trends in the post-pandemic era.
In the moderated stress market, for example, the average stress level reported by U.S. adults in May 2020 was 5.9 on a 10-point scale, higher than the average stress level of 4.9 reported in 2019, the first significant increase reported since the survey began in 2007. Meanwhile, about 46 percent of American parents reported stress on a scale of 8 to 10 during the pandemic, with 1 indicating almost no stress.
Research shows that stress can affect our mood, sleep, energy levels and mental health. But when stress is chronic or persistent, recent research confirms that it can also affect brain, digestive, nervous and immune systems, and heart health.
"Steady" growth of food in natural channel sector
From avoiding alcohol and caffeine, to cooking more at home, people tend to be healthy and seek healthier solutions. Here's what natural products retailers have to say about food sales in 2020 versus 2019. Most retailers have experienced modest but significant growth as consumers cook more at home and develop a taste for baking.
In contrast, most organic food sales in 2020 experienced modest growth. Here's how natural products retailers compared to 2019.
Natural dietary supplement retailers said one in four experienced an increase of more than 20 percent in 2020 compared to 2019 .
"Definition" of natural Retail Store
Natural Products store:
More than 60 percent of the stores' revenue comes from food. They are often the largest stores in the market, offering a wide variety of products, from nutritional supplements and body care to groceries to frozen products. Most of these stores have large pet and household sections, while food and beverage services (bakeries and deli sections) are also common.
Health food stores:
These stores make more than 20 percent of their sales from food and more than 50 percent from a combination of food and nutritional supplements. Typically, they are smaller than natural products stores, although they also have grocery, cold drinks and frozen sections, which can be smaller, with the exception of nutritional supplements and body care.
Dietary supplement stores:
As the title suggests, these stores focus on dietary supplements, with at least 60 percent of sales coming from dietary supplements and less than 20 percent from food. The main product they offer is dietary supplements, usually with some body care, and may have a small grocery store (drinks and snacks). They are also the smallest stores in terms of retail space.