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2017 Trends Sports Nutrition Distributors Are Watching

Sports Nutrition Distributors

We are not even half-way through Q2 of this year and we've already seen some interesting trends in sports nutrition. Some of these trends affect what happens here at Nutrivend and with our vending partners. We are happy to say that the trends are all good, thanks to a gradually improving economy and a willingness among manufacturers to step into new areas. Sports nutrition distributors are looking forward to seeing what the rest of the year brings.

From our perspective, there are five specific trends our industry should keep a good eye on. Each of the trends explained below will have an impact on how distributors and retailers approach the second half of 2017.

5 Trends Sports Nutrition Distributors Should Watch

1. The Push for Functional Foods

In our last blog post, we discussed the idea of functional foods and their place in sports nutrition. The discussion was no accident. Functional foods are becoming increasingly more important in our industry even as more traditional sports drinks and bars are beginning to fade. People want functional foods because they want the extra benefits that go beyond simple nutrition. We expect to see more functional options being made available to sports nutrition distributors through the second half of the year.

2. More Natural Ingredients

It might seem that the sports nutrition category is already heavily focused on natural ingredients. Yet that isn't the case. Everything from sports drinks to energy bars have more artificial ingredients than people know. That may change in the coming months as knowledgeable customers continue demanding a shift to natural choices.

3. More Beverage Options

Most of the sports nutrition distribution to this point has focused on foods like energy bars. That was fine for its time, but consumers are demanding more ready-to-drink sports beverages to go along with those energy bars. They are no longer content with the simple sports drinks of the past either. They want new beverages that are both functional and more flavourful.

4. Plant Proteins

Proteins are obviously important to people interested in sports nutrition. Dairy proteins continue to dominate, but more manufacturers are looking at making the transition to plant proteins. These new proteins could really break out in 2017 if a big-name manufacturer could figure out how to make them more soluble.

5. Less Emphasis on Thermogenics

Lastly, thermogenic products have never really taken off as much as manufacturers had hoped. The biggest challenge in this space is the cost of the ingredients. Until such time as consumers are willing to embrace thermogenic products at a slightly higher price point, continuing to invest in them is not practical for many manufacturers. We expect to see less interest in thermogenics through the remainder of the year.

Sports nutrition distributors are in a good place so far in 2017. Business is good, growth is steady, and the future looks bright. We will have to see how these five emerging trends play out for the remainder of the year; rest assured there are no worries.