Over one in five say they are concerned about their fatigue levels
India may be a good expansion market for mattress brands. Food and vitamin marketers may want to emphasize energy-boosting features for campaigns there. And retail designers might consider providing relaxation and convenience to Indian shoppers and diners.
Why? New research by Mintel shows tiredness and fatigue are currently the leading health concern in India. The latest findings reveal as many as 22% of adults in India — based on 3,029 adults aged 18 to 64 — say they are personally concerned about their tiredness and fatigue levels, rising to one in four (25%) women, making this the leading health concern in the country, followed by blood pressure (12%), diabetes (9%), and being overweight (8%).
As consumers battle with tiredness, it seems they are turning towards food and drink for energy. While three in four (75%) Indian consumers snack once a day or more, over one-quarter (28%) do so to get an energy boost. And the food and drink industry is taking note. According to Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD), between 2012 and 2016 there was a 100% increase in the number of food and drink products launched in India containing the words “energizing” or “energetic” on-pack.
Eat right, sleep tight
The study further notes that while tiredness is the leading health concern among consumers, sleep is currently given the highest priority in terms of the factors needed to lead a healthy lifestyle. Over half (53%) of Indian consumers say that in order to live a healthy lifestyle they need to get the right amount of sleep. In comparison, 52% say they regularly eat a healthy diet in order to stay healthy, while one in four (24%) say they maintain a healthy weight and 17% say they eat organic or natural foods.
“With so many consumers in India concerned about their tiredness levels, the time is ripe for energy-enhancing food and drink innovation,” says Neha Nayak, innovation consultant at Mintel. “Evening is tapped as a new occasion for functional food and drink formulations. There is potential for nighttime products that help consumers of all ages calm down before bedtime, sleep better and restore the body while they rest.”
Relaxation has become a focus for a number of manufacturers and the majority of this activity is happening across the tea category. Brands looking to develop an offering of relaxation should look to the tea category for inspiration on the kinds of ingredients to use and product communication to target consumers.
Although energy levels may currently be low across the country, Mintel research indicates that work still comes first for many consumers. Of employed consumers in India, around two in five (38%) say that their career always comes first and 18% say they typically work longer hours than they are contracted for. And it appears that even outside of work, there’s little time to relax. While one in five (20%) say they try to study or learn new skills in their spare time to get ahead in their career, one in eight (12%) say they typically check or answer their work email after they get back home or on weekends.
Due to hectic work schedules, many are looking for ways to relax and de-stress. The vast majority (98%) of consumers in India believe that it is important to lead a healthy lifestyle and one-third (32%) say they’re motivated to do so in order to feel less stressed. However, while the intention is there, few are taking steps to do so. Currently, just 35% of consumers say they dedicate time to relaxation in order to stay healthy, while one in five (21%) maintain a good work-life balance. On the other hand, 10% of those who snack do so because they are stressed, according to Mintel.
Tea can be key
As a result, Mintel states that research reveals there are opportunities to help consumers relax and calm down after a busy day. While the number of products launched globally featuring “relax” on-pack grew by 9% between in 2015 and 2016, the number of these launches in India grew by 34% in the same time period. Furthermore, Mintel GNPD data shows that of these launches in India in 2016, 14% were in the tea category.
As the global workforce grows and technological advances make it harder to ‘clock out’, more consumers are in need of products that provide comfort or relaxation. Some consumers already turn to food and drink to address their emotional needs, as evidenced by the popularity of chocolate and energy drinks, Nayak says.
“Relaxation has become a focus for a number of manufacturers and the majority of this activity is happening across the tea category,” Nayak adds. “Brands looking to develop an offering of relaxation should look to the tea category for inspiration on the kinds of ingredients to use and product communication to target consumers.”
Finally, Mintel research indicates that spare time is a thing of the past for many in India. Currently one in three (35%) consumers in India say that on an average weekday they have two hours or less to do what they would like between the time they get up and the time they go to bed, while 8% say they have no spare time. Additionally, at the weekend 28% say they have two hours or less to do what they want on an average day, while 6% say they have no spare time.
As a result, Mintel research finds that many are looking for multi-tasking products, particularly for evening use. According to Mintel GNPD, almost three quarters (72%) of products launched in India in 2016 referencing “night” or “evening” on-pack were beauty and personal care products, compared to 9% which were food products and just 2% which were drink products.
“Evening already is associated with functionality in the beauty industry, where creams and serums claim to work during the overnight hours,” Nayak says. “Going forward, consumers, especially those who are accustomed to multi-tasking, will want to make better use of their precious nighttime hours. There is a market for nighttime products that help consumers of all ages calm down before bedtime, sleep better and restore the body while they rest.”