"The last night, drink the most hydrating water." Recently, the popularity of a whole staying up late ginseng water has made relevant functional foods attract more attention. With the enhancement of consumers' health awareness, functional food and beverage products emerge one after another, such as meal replacement shakes, collagen beverages, hyaluronic acid sparkling water, and probiotic tablets, each of which seems to be able to successfully harvest a wave of young people. However, there is no clear concept of functional food and beverages, and disputes about "IQ tax", "playing concept" and "homogenization" are not uncommon.
Brand focus on functionality
Recently, the "One Whole" Staying Up Water launched by Lawson convenience store in Chongqing, Shenzhen and other regions has become popular on the Internet because it contains a whole root of ginseng, and its appearance is particularly novel. The introduction posted by the "Chongqing Lawson" account on the social platform shows that the ginseng contained in the water for staying up late is produced in Changbai Mountain. Within eight hours of opening the lid, the cup can be refilled with warm water for eight times.
The reporter searched and found that once the product was launched, it attracted comments from netizens. Netizens have mixed comments on the taste of this water for staying up late. Some netizens said, "It feels very nourishing after drinking a sip, and those who stay up late can arrange it." However, some netizens said that "the taste is bitter and not very tasty", "I bought a whole bottle of water for staying up late with the curiosity of curiosity. It is estimated that the health preservation is really health preservation, but drinking a direct pain mask".
In the evaluation pictures released by netizens, the reporter found that the "one whole root" of staying up late water was developed by a company called "Hardcore Yan Research Institute". The content released by the WeChat public account of "Hardcore Yan Institute Lab" shows that the company was founded in 2021, and the brand is positioned as a health care fast-moving brand, that is, combining traditional nourishing and modern retail models to integrate nourishing products into functional beverages.
The relevant person in charge of the Hardcore Yan Research Institute introduced to the reporter of China Business Daily that the creative source of "one whole root" of staying up late water lies in the observation of its R&D team that in the post-epidemic period, most young people are in a sub-healthy state of double overdraft of spirit and body . The Hardcore Yan Institute said that it hopes to have a product that can make everyone feel full of energy every day.
Regarding the future layout of the functional food market, the above-mentioned person in charge told reporters: "Now we have combined consumer feedback to further optimize the product."
In fact, "one whole root" staying up late water is not the first functional food and beverage to become popular on the Internet. Before that, biotin gummies that can "prevent hair loss", rose candy tablets that can "eat tender white roses" by chewing two capsules a day, Huangjing wolfberry candy that can "boost energy" after eating two capsules, and Eating a functional snack such as enzyme jelly that "can not only detoxify and detoxify oil but also help lose weight" has also become popular on the Internet.
In addition, the hot functional food and beverage market has also attracted many companies to enter the market. Amway has launched the Xiaon series of snack-based nutritional supplements, including a variety of functional gummies; By-Health has launched a series of new functional gummies, such as acerola cherry vitamin C gummies, DHA gummies, etc.; a time-honored brand of traditional Chinese medicine Tongrentang's cross-border launch of "Goji Berry Latte" has also received a lot of praise. Tianyancha data also shows that at present, there are more than 9,300 enterprises in my country whose business scope includes "functional food" or "functional beverage", of which more than 70% have been established in the past five years.
Young people become the main consumer
With the upgrading of people's awareness of healthy consumption, the market size of functional food and beverages is increasing year by year. According to the data of the Prospective Industry Research Institute, in recent years, the market size of my country's functional food industry has grown steadily. According to the data of China Business Industry Research Institute, the size of my country's functional food market will exceed 600 billion yuan in 2022.
Capital is also paying attention to the functional food and beverage market. Since last year, a number of functional food companies have been favored by capital and completed multiple rounds of financing. For example, in April 2021, Jinduoduo, an innovative candy company, completed an angel round of financing of nearly 100 million yuan. The second round of financing was led by Fosun and followed by Tongchuangweiye. In the same month, the skin care and functional food brand “Ninglang” completed thousands of rounds of financing. 10,000 yuan angel round financing. The functional food and beverage brand "Yuan Institute" also completed seed rounds and angel rounds of financing within half a year, with a cumulative amount of tens of millions of yuan and a valuation of over 100 million yuan.
The popularity of the functional food and beverage track stems from the strong market demand, and young people have become the main consumption force in this market. Some experts believe that Generation Z (the generation born between 1995 and 2009) has a new trend of excessive consumption of health and anxiety-style "following the tide" and "waiting for replenishment" nutrition and health.
The "Youth Health Consumption Trend Report" released by CBNData shows that more than half of the post-90s in my country suffer from hair loss, hair loss, and weakened vision. At the same time, about 40% have obesity and decreased exercise ability, and 30% have immunity. falling problem. In addition, according to the "Report on Nutrition Consumption Trends of Generation Z", young people are becoming the main force of current health care consumption. On average, each urban resident spends more than 1,000 yuan per year on health care, and young consumers aged 18-35 account for the majority. The ratio is as high as 83.7%.
Under the pursuit of health by Generation Z, traditional health care products with ordinary packaging and single form cannot meet the current health care needs of Generation Z. At this time, functional food and beverages came into being. Jiang Han, a senior researcher of Pangu Think Tank, analyzed the reporter from China Business Daily that the reason for the popularity of this track is the growth of the economy and the improvement of living standards, especially the increasing awareness of health preservation among urban white-collar consumers. In addition, when the daily work pressure is high, functional food and beverages may be able to give young people some psychological comfort.
where is the next stop
Although the functional food market is hot, it should be noted that there is no precise definition of the concept of functional food. According to the relevant provisions of the "Food Safety Law of the People's Republic of China", China's food categories can be divided into two categories: ordinary food and special food. Special food includes health food, infant formula food and formula food for special medical purposes. There is no such thing as a "functional food".
According to industry insiders, functional foods are close to health foods, both of which have health-promoting functions and belong to the same category of food. However, functional foods do not fall under the scope of supervision of drugs or health products, and do not need to be filed, nor do they need to do double-blind medical experiments to prove their efficacy. Therefore, consumers also question the "intelligence quotient tax" of the "functionality" of functional foods.
The reporter searched and found that some netizens commented in the blog post related to "one whole root" staying up late water, "Is it an IQ tax while staying up late, is this an IQ tax", and some netizens said that they bought a bottle specially after staying up late, but "I didn't feel it. to what effect". The reporter searched the product evaluation of the above-mentioned BUFFX, Minayo and other brands on the e-commerce platform and found that most of the consumer evaluations are only related to the packaging and taste of the product, and there is not much feedback on the actual effect. In the question of "no effect", most of the consumers who have purchased said that "the effect is not obvious" and "it does not feel useful".
At the same time, functional food and beverages also face the problem of homogenization. The reporter found that although there are many kinds of functional foods on the market, the ingredients and forms of the products lack novelty. In this regard, Jiang Han analyzed to reporters that if brands want to stand out from similar competing products, they need to work together on the marketing side and the product side. Not only do we need to identify our own user groups in the market and grasp consumer demand, we also need to continuously promote research and development and iterate new products, so as to maintain the core competitiveness of the brand ahead of the industry.
In addition, it is worth mentioning that market supervision has become more stringent. From June 1 this year, the State Administration for Market Regulation's "Announcement on Strengthening the Quality and Safety Supervision of Solid Beverages" was officially implemented. The announcement made detailed regulations on the labeling, warning information, and false claims of solid beverages. It is mentioned that solid beverages shall not expressly or implicitly involve disease prevention, treatment functions, health care functions, and meeting the special needs of specific disease groups. This also means that in the future, the method of "disguising" solid beverages as special medical food, health food, etc. will no longer work. In the eyes of industry insiders, the introduction of the new regulations will make the market more standardized. With stricter supervision, the entire industry will enter a period of reshuffle.